Departures aka Okuribito wins Best Foreign Film, Oscars 2008

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BiscLimpkit
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Departures aka Okuribito wins Best Foreign Film, Oscars 2008

Unread post by BiscLimpkit » 01 May 2009, 18:03

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFIXRz2QcE8

Acceptance speech above. LOL at the last guy.

Anyways I really liked this film. Director Yojiro Takita has a wealth of filmmaking experience but I've only seen two other titles: the excellent When the Last Sword is Drawn aka Mibu Gishi Den and the absolutely diabolical Ashura. Subsequently, I wasn't sure if I would like this film but as it turns out, it's my favourite Takita title to date (but then I've only seen three).

Did it deserve the Oscar? Well I can't say, as I've not seen the other titles. But they would have to be spectacular to beat this little film. It deals with an unemployed fella finding work as an encoffiner. It's a job, which he's unsure of at first but then finds joy and pride in his work. He basically makes the departed look presentable one last time before burial/cremation. The thing is though, he does it live and with taste. Not really sure if this practise is the norm in Japan but it is almost an art-form, changing the departed into fine robes without revealing skin to the family and loved ones. This guy's life isn't made easy though once his friend and wife learn of his "disgusting" new job. So he tries to show how his work leaves a profound impact on his audience.

Don't think this film is for everyone but it certainly struck a chord with me. Thought the acting was top class and was delighted to see Ryoko Hirosue - someone I've not seen act in a major role for a while. The main actor is Masahiro Motoki, who was in Miike's Bird People in China. Also chuffed that the director isn't a one-hit-wonder. I mean the film is engulfed in fine photography and music. An absolute delight to watch IMO.
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Unread post by grim_tales » 01 May 2009, 18:16

Yo Bisc,
Welcome back :D How are you?

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BiscLimpkit
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Unread post by BiscLimpkit » 01 May 2009, 18:22

Fine thanks, yourself? Been upto much?

Look out for this film. :love5:
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Unread post by HungFist » 01 May 2009, 18:34

I don't know if Oscar is exactly a good sign, but I suppose I'll end up seeing this sooner or later.

I hope Takita has improved since Pink Physical Examination and 5 Seconds Till Climax.

Maybe someone will now release the Molester's Train series on dvd, too.

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Unread post by EvaUnit02 » 01 May 2009, 18:55

Wasn't everyone expecting Waltz with Bashir to win?

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Unread post by bradavon » 01 May 2009, 18:57

Has this even been released in the UK? Madness for a Oscar winner.

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BiscLimpkit
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Unread post by BiscLimpkit » 02 May 2009, 00:31

Actually I agree with the point that I don't consider a film's value by how many oscars its won. Just thought I'd mention it here as a little FYI. It seems to have a growing fan base anyway (although I don't expect everybody to have the same opinion).

The DVD's out in Japan but I suspect a western release isn't too far away - especially after its Academy Award. I think they have a distributor already - just a matter of time.

I'll check out the other Oscar contenders - think I have Waltz with Bashir in my lovefilm rental queue.
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Unread post by Shingster » 02 May 2009, 02:57

I think The Japan Society are currently showing it in independant cinemas across the country.

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Unread post by grim_tales » 02 May 2009, 15:16

I'm not too bad Bisc, thanks :D

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Unread post by ghevans » 31 May 2009, 02:45

Beautiful film this, have to admit it got me choked up during a bunch of scenes (especially the grieving husband who thanks them for making his wife look beautiful on her final day - that destroyed me).

the end with the stone was a little convenient and expected but it still very much worked within the framework of the film and oddly came away from a film about death feeling absolutely great about life.

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Unread post by grim_tales » 31 May 2009, 13:43

Hey ghevans!
Been up to much?

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Unread post by HungFist » 22 Jun 2009, 21:40


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Gaijin84
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Re: Departures aka Okuribito wins Best Foreign Film, Oscars 2008

Unread post by Gaijin84 » 19 Jan 2010, 20:06

Saw this last night - very good film! Lots of emotional scenes and some funny parts as well with nice acting all around. I'll have to see Waltz with Bashir to determine if it deserved the Oscar. More than anything it made me want to visit the province it was set in (I think it was Yamagata).

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