Time Out says
It’s a summit of coiled emotion, a rare occasion on which parents, children and grandchildren can awkwardly air grievances while happily munching on sushi, eel and tempura. Despite the fact that every shot is loaded with anxieties about death (of family members, of tradition…), the tone remains warm and ironic. The way Koreeda films – mostly discreet shots of the family’s cramped suburban house – makes most directors look blind to the possibilities of locating ideas in mundane imagery, such as a drawer left slightly open, a butterfly entering the house, or cherry blossom blooming in the garden.
His beautiful dialogue, too, favours gentle naturalism over characters breaking down and blurting out feelings, giving it a subtle universality: we see reflections of people we know and love in these characters. Koreeda’s almost sage-like understanding of what makes modern families tick places him and this wonderful film in the league of Japan’s grand master, Ozu, and you can’t ask for higher praise than that.
Cast and crew