Written May 13, 2012
I don't mean the title of this review in a nasty, pornographic sense. This movie depicts the education of a woman who suffers grievous losses at different times of her life. As often happens, she loses people whom she treasures suddenly and without the possibility of understanding. Regardless of how old you are, if you aren't mature enough to recognize that, contrary to the feel-good nostrum that "everything happens for a reason," the simple fact is that a lot of terrible things happen for no reason at all, don't watch this movie because it will make absolutely no sense to you.
Other "adult" elements which the immature are not ready to experience: cinematography that finds beauty in a raw, seaside town, a pervasive sense of quiet and peace, an emotional journey from lonely despair to acceptance.
I've watched this movie three or four times and have loved it every time.
Written May 12, 2009
Ozu-inspred director Hirokazu Kore-eda made his first commercial fim (he typically does documentaries) with this elegantly realized and exquistely quiet little film about a young woman dealing with the aftermath of her husband's mysterious suicide. Japanese super-model Maikko Esumi embodies all the necessary stillness and inner reflection of this downtrodden character who is set up with the help of matchmacker 5 years later to marry a simple man (nicely played by Arika Emoto) in a remote, seaside fishing village in order to properly take of her and her young son who was only 3 months old when the first husband (much underused Tadanobu Asano) abruptly died. Gorgeous photography and amazingly nuanced performances make this a remarkable cinematic experience for those who desire something dleicately presented. No easy answers are fourthcoming in this touching drama, and all the much more powerful for it!! Quite a revelation in this age of nonsensical popcorn movies!! HIGHLY RECCOMENDED!!