Like Someone in Love (2012)

like someone in love

Like Someone in Love is like a puzzle of identity, melancholy and intimacy. Tokyo student by day and call-girl by night, the story follows the main character before, during and after an encounter with a client. Long-cut scenes of confinement and stationary-captured dialogue define the storytelling and make the film dream-like as per artistic Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami. Supporting characters swiftly enter and exit the plot’s flow with impact. Eroticism is a quiet undercurrent while the film serves more to establish simple human connection. Like Someone in Love is simply told along stunning visuals and alludes to more with no exaggeration.

Spoiler: The opening scene establishes tone and pace. The ending scene is abruptly fitting.

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Movie Review: Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011) — Japanese Documentary

Jiro Dreams of Sushi

What is perfection? I don’t know. But the road to perfection is a delicate combination of passion and dedication that can only be carved with a sashimi knife. If anyone knows about the road to perfection its Jiro Ono the legendary sushi master and owner of Sukiyabashi Jiro. You don’t have to be a chef or even a sushi lover to appreciate this documentary. ‘Jiro Dreams of Sushi‘ will definitely have any movie goer dreaming of sushi.

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The film goes deep into Jiro’s world; his world of sushi. Its really a lifestyle bio as it draws on a man’s past upbringing and looks towards his future ambitions. As an 85-year old with one son managing a sister restaurant and another son under his watch preparing to take the reigns, Jiro is still perfecting his craft. With a compelling score and crisp cinematography, the documentary highlights various aspects in the art of sushi from vendors to apprentices.

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About the Film

JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI is the story of 85-year-old Jiro Ono, considered by many to be the world’s greatest sushi chef. He is the proprietor of Sukiyabashi Jiro, a 10-seat, sushi-only restaurant inauspiciously located in a Tokyo subway station. Despite its humble appearances, it is the first restaurant of its kind to be awarded a prestigious three-star Michelin Guide rating, and sushi lovers from around the globe make repeated pilgrimage, calling months in advance and shelling out top dollar for a coveted seat at Jiro’s sushi bar.

JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI is a thoughtful and elegant meditation on work, family, and the art of perfection, chronicling Jiro’s life as both an unparalleled success in the culinary world and as a loving yet complicated father. (Magnolia Pictures)

Jiro Dreams of Sushi is a whole-picture type of documentary. Another good watch featuring Jiro is from the TV show Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations (Travel Channel). This clip focuses on the ‘perfectly timed, 15 courses in 20 minutes’ which is infamously known as the best sushi meal in the world:

Directed by: David Gelb

Reviews: Rotten Tomatoes // The Globe & Mail // The New Yorker

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aparoo says 5/5, watching this documentary the first time was depressing for me because I wish I was aware of Jiro and his sushi back in 2007 when I visited Japan.

Stream: YouTube

Image source: asianwiki.com // Magnolia Pictures

Movie Review: An Assassin [Asashin] (2011) – Japanese Movie

Asashin,  An Assassin

An Assassin‘ (Asashin) is director Go Ohara‘s latest action film that can also be tagged as a Japanese film noir. With an underworld backdrop and a typical assassin plot (mistake, girl, destiny, survive) there is not much to be offered by the story. — Especially with what seems to be either an underdeveloped script or an attempt to show silence and brute force. The silence is mostly from weak dialogue with long pauses and long close-ups with extended facial expressions. This causes any emitted emotion from the scenes to simply wither away and make you wait, what seems like forever, til the next cut scene.

“Human drama that arises between a ‘Pitiless assassin’ and ‘One high school girl’. A fierce friendship with the one who risked his life.” (IMDb)

Japanese trailer (Twitch)

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But with all that, there are still some redeeming qualities to the film. For example, I only realised when “France” was mentioned the second time why the score was French strings. There are other symbolic gestures throughout the film which give it a raw-noir feel instead of simply a low budget and small production feel. More so, the low budget and small production is a notable element of the film adding to the raw-noir feel (as I call it) because it was filmed entirely at night in Sendai Miyagia, a famous shrine grove. Even the overzealous gun play and frequent cigarette smoking grows on the viewer as the film progresses. I know we all want guns that don’t have to be reloaded..

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Starring: Ryoma Baba //Sayuri Iwata // Yuki Kubota // Hassei Takano
Written by: Kubota Hiroyasu // Go Ohara

aparoo’s words: action, film noir, underworld, assassin, righteousness, romance, brotherhood, loyalty, fight, survive

aparoo says 3/5

Stream: Dramacrazy
Download: Asia Torrents