Sunday, July 12, 2009

Noriko's Dinner Table 紀子の食卓 (2005)

Noriko's Dinner Table - I really don't remember what I thought of Suicide Club. Maybe that means it wasn't worth much. The ending was very bizarre, very crazy. Sort of satanic, in a way. SONO Sion impressed the hell out of me with Strange Circus. Like Blind Beast, it's one of those films that I have to love in secret, lest I lose even more friends. Yeah, it's not really safe for your normal types. He should have made an addition to that instead of that trite circus. I knew, going into it, that NDT would be somewhat better than Suicide Club. The big running time made me assume that he would build an intricate story, which he did, even if it feels a little bit bloated (not that the film is too long, I have patience, but the length doesn't really mean it's going to be better - this isn't A Brighter Summer Day). I kind of loved the eponymous protagonist, for looks and identification. She matches the strong, intelligent woman that can so easily be found in Japanese cinema, though she is incredibly naive in such youth. But lo and behold, she's ripped from my enjoyment, and Sono delves into the silly stories of the father and the friend and the sister. I thought this was just going to be about Noriko, the other characters aren't nearly as interesting. But what Sono did, and badly at that, was weave a domestic drama over bizarre events. Yet, it's not a profound domestic drama the way The Sting of Death is, or I'm hoping so dearly, the way Okaeri will be (if you read this and no where I can find it, then I'll be indebted to you for life). It's just more national ethos, you'll get it if you've learned the vocabulary. Nothing new here, mixed with the old female worship too. *6 out of 10

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