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Japanese Story (2003)

Cast: Toni Collette, Gotaro Tsunashima, Matthew Dyktynski, more...
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Studio: Columbia TriStar
Genre: Drama, Foreign, Japan, Australia & New Zealand
Running Time: 100 min.
Languages: English
Subtitles: English
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This title is currently out of print.

Following their feature debut, Road to Nhill, in 1997, screenwriter Alison Tilson and director Sue Brooks team up again for the Australian drama Japanese Story. Toni Collette stars as Sandy Edwards, an ambitious geologist who is most comfortable when working alone. She also runs a software design company with a business partner, Bill Baird (Matthew Dyktynski), and she doesn't get along very well with her mother (Lynette Curran). While trying to sell their software products, Bill asks for her help in catching a prospective client. Sandy reluctantly meets the quiet and reserved Japanese businessman Hiromitsu (Gotaro Tsunashima) in order to make a sale. After he requests that she take him on a driving tour, the odd couple find themselves stranded in the Pilbara desert for a night -- one of the most remote places in the Australian outback. During this time together, their relationship quickly escalates and both parties are changed by the experience. Japanese Story premiered at the 2003 Cannes Film Festival. ~ Andrea LeVasseur, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

Intelligent and engaging by gocam July 4, 2005 - 11:30 PM PDT
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful
I was very surprised at how engrossing and affecting this movie was given the other reviews I'd seen. It is _not_ a character piece where you learn about each of the actor's motivations, but I don't believe it aims to be that, and rather becomes something much more compelling for it. It's a meditation on many things - chance, engagement, connectivity, culture, loss, redemption - and as such it's pacing is slower than many more traditionally paced dramas. But it's precisely as long as it needs to be, and I thoroughly recommend giving it a chance. And the performances are fantastic.

Pretentious + poorly developed = not good by mrfrosting July 9, 2004 - 10:36 AM PDT
2 out of 8 members found this review helpful
I had seen a trailer for this that looked pretty good. It lead the viewer to believe that there was a big mystery leading to the denouement. BUT...this is a pretentious piece of silliness. There is nothing concrete about either of the characters -- the viewer is asked to read everything into the two protagonists' actions. Who are they? Why do they behave that way? You'll have to ask them personally. To sum it up: the movie forces the viewer to watch two completely unlikable characters and try to guess why they're so unlikable. Bad stuff.

Rather unexpected by niko88 May 16, 2004 - 11:35 AM PDT
1 out of 8 members found this review helpful
This is love story but it isn't. The plot develops (rather slowly) but then it takes a u-turn. The music is nice for a time but then is so repetitive it starts to drive you nuts. This movie has a lot of potential but I can't say that I would recommend it to anyone other than those interested in the Australian landscape.

GreenCine Member Rating

(Average 6.51)
90 Votes
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Cannes Film Festival & More - 2003
Official Selection, Certain Regards... and more. Here is a bit more information on the films screened at the Cannes. I have attempted to list all the films that were considered for an award as well as any special screenings.
Hal Hartley Hits and Other Kicks (Of Mine)
Great Movies Spanning Many Genres

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