In this 'diary', Wenders tried to relate his impressions of Tokyo to those he had gleaned from the work of the late, great Yasujiro Ozu. No mere travelogue, the film is like a less complex version of Chris Marker's Sans Soleil, with Wenders' ideas fewer and less fruitful than his images. His eye for the bizarre, as sharp as it is selective, revels in long, engrossing sequences shot at a pachinko arcade, a golf stadium, a wax-food factory, and a rockabilly gathering; though his narration never admits to finding them absurd, he is clearly fascinated by the obsessive nature of his subjects' recreational activities. More rewarding (if less funny) are interviews with
(lead actor in countless Ozu films) and cameraman
, who worked almost exclusively with Ozu for decades. Both are modest, intelligent and very likeable, but Atsuta steals the show, shedding valuable light on Ozu's unique, contemplative camera style, and offering a profoundly moving personal valediction to the man himself.
Cast and crew