Friday 11 December 2009
Yojiro Takita's gentle comic drama centres upon a cellist (Masahiro Motoki) who, after his orchestra disbands, returns to his hometown.
Here he mistakenly applies for a job in "departures" – he thinks it's a travel agency, whereas it's a business of "encoffinment", the ritualised undertaking of the dead. While his wife and friends are mortified by his choice, the observation of these precise and respectful last rites conveys not only the solace of the bereaved but the consolation of the work itself to the cellist's bruised soul. Its occasional mawkishness, and the backstory of Motoki's estranged father, suggest why the Academy awarded it Best Foreign Language Film last year – it plucks those strings a little too eagerly – but the understated playing and its good-heartedness will keep you on its side.
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Review: Cilla, ITV TV
Arts & Ents blogs
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- 2 Scottish independence: Learn from Quebec's mistakes and beware of promises. Vote Yes.
- 3 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 4 Revealed after 75 years of secrecy: 'Fifi' the glamorous WW2 special agent who tested British spies' resolve
- 5 Hitler’s former food taster reveals the horrors of the Wolf’s Lair
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Pharrell Williams says that 'Blurred Lines' criticism is 'out of context'
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Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Portuguese academic says British are 'filthy, violent and drunk'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'