Takashi Film Festival, Tokyo Sports Movie Awards, Cannes Un Certain Regard, Toronto International Film Festival, Pusan International Film Festival, Rotterdam International Film Festival, Taipei Golden Horse, Belgrade International Film Festival, Palm Springs International Film Festival
Fantasia Film Festival 2010 - AQCC Award - Hirokazu Kore-eda
Yoshiie Gouda, Hirokazu Kore-eda
ARATA, Bae Doona, Itsuji Itao
Every night, Hideo leaves the restaurant at which he works, returning to the home he shares with the one balm for his daily boredom. Her name is Nozomi. She's really quite a stunner and she's always ready to lend an ear when her lover has problems to air. Hideo adores her deeply, consistently displaying his affection for her and showering her with little gifts. The couple's idyllic existence alternates between long conversations and torrid bouts of sex. They're in love and if Nozomi weren't an inflatable doll, their relationship would be an ideal one. One day, the unexpected occurs. When Hideo steps out of his apartment, Nozomi suddenly comes to life.
After creating the touching autobiographical drama STILL WALKING, Hirokazu Kore-eda revisits the fantastic, a genre he explored in his film AFTER LIFE, in AIR DOLL. The director of NOBODY KNOWS delivers a poetic meditation in which the use of magic realism allows him to illustrate the ills of modern society. Seeing the world through the childlike eyes of Nozomi, the audience shares her difficult treading between the marvellous and the miserable. It's hard not to be moved by the many surprises in store for the living doll – one of which in particular, thanks to some impressive digital effects, will linger with you long after the credits roll. Despite its dramatic impact, AIR DOLL is threaded with humour and open-heartedness, offering an optimistic counterpoint to the film's cynical tone. Moreover, one can't help but fall for the charms of Korean actress Bae Du-na who, after turning heads in THE HOST, displays incredible charisma here, almost single-handedly carrying the film herself. Unique and poignant, AIR DOLL again confirms Kore-eda as a master of contemporary cinema. Translation: Rupert Bottenberg
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