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GreenCine Movie Talk
In The Theaters
I just saw it and boy does it...

Nobody Knows
Topic by: itchy008
Posted: February 20, 2005 - 11:08 PM PST
Last Reply: February 22, 2005 - 7:06 AM PST

author topic: Nobody Knows
post #1  on February 20, 2005 - 11:08 PM PST  
"Nobody Knows" ("Dare mo shiranai") is playing in Berekely until 2/24 and can also be seen in San Francisco (I don't know for how long) and other major markets.

It's the fourth feature by Hirokazu Kore-eda, who also made "Maborosi", "After Life", and "Distance."

It's about four children (ages 12-5), fathered by four different men, who are left alone by their mother. The two oldest try to take care of the family but, as the poem says, things fall apart.

Just as he did in "Maborosi," Kore-eda patiently observes the passage of time in "Nobody Knows." The family moves in to their new apartment in the fall and the mother leaves for a month. She returns for a short stay and then disappears for good. The seasons pass; winter gives way to spring and then summer settles...and all the while entrophy slowly takes hold.

Unlike Kore-eda's first two films, "Nobody Knows" examines some of the prevailing social problems in Japan: parental negligence, compensated dating, bullying. Watching the film, I realized that not only the mother is at fault but all the adults in film. No one over 21 seems to notice that the children have been left alone. While his siblings are kept in the apartment, the eldest goes out for groceries and runs errands. No one notices that his t-shirts get dirtier and more frayed. Near the end, he looks like a homeless child or a refugee from a Third World country. Yet the manager at the convenience store doesn't notice his appearance at all; he just makes inane small talk and takes the boy's money.

Nobody's paying attention. Nobody helps. Maybe that's Hell.
post #2  on February 22, 2005 - 7:06 AM PST  
Another great Japanese film about child abandonment/endangerment that grabbed me by the throat is The Demon.

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