No One's Ark


Time Out says

Confirming the promise of Hazy Life, Yamashita's second feature explores the travails of two would-be entrepreneurs. Daisuke (Hiroshi Yamamoto) and his long term girlfriend Hisako (Kotera) retreat from Osaka to the country town where Daisuke was raised in a last ditch attempt to find a market for their 'health drink' Akajiru. The main obstacle is that everyone who tastes Akajiru finds it disgusting. Against the backdrop of their inevitable failure the film catches the rhythms and character of small town life: the depiction of Daisuke's embarrassment in dealing with long unseen relatives and friends is exquisitely precise, and the integration of counterpoints (such as his independent-minded friend Madoka who offers 'Fashion Health' massages under the name Veronica) is quite expert. This grassroots version of the bursting of Japan's 1990s economic bubble is more droll and better observed than any major studio picture yet. Yamashita is way ahead of the pack in defining his generation's struggle to find its place in Japan Inc.

By: TR


Release details

111 mins

Cast and crew

Nobuhiro Yamashita
Kosuke Mukai, Nobuhiro Yamashita
Hiroshi Yamamoto
Tomoko Kotera
Yuko Hosoe
Takeshi Yamamoto
Akiko Tanaka
Maki Imaeda
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