Monday, May 2, 2011

Villon's Wife


Set after the Second World War the film tells the story of Sachi, who is woken up late one night by her husband who staggers in. He is followed in close order by some barkeep who say he stole some money. She talks him out of trouble and in order to keep him that way she begins working for the bar owners. Things become complicated as people from their pasts and the feelings of jealousy comes in.

A deliberately paced (slow for some) film that really surprised me.
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First off the films twists and turns are not what I expected. Cliches? Not this time out. In a weird way some of the twists and turns play closer to reality than most "real films". I was expecting gloom and doom and blood everywhere, it has the feel of that sort of tragedy, but it's not.

I liked that while on a certain level you kind of know the characters early on as time goes on and the film reveals more and more in flashbacks you get nice bit of shading that in a weird way explains so much about the characters. Its also the sort of film that grows deeper with later viewings since the late in the film revelations change how you see the early bits.

Its a film that nicely confounds expectations in a good way. Best of all by the time I reached the end of the film I was so deeply invested in the characters that when the final image came I found it to be the utterly perfect and the sort of thing that brought a tear to these jaded eyes.



In a way it's a simple story beautifully told and acted.

A nice surprise.



This was one of the films I was suppose to see around the time of last years New York Asian Film Festival and the related Japan Cuts. I had picked up a copy on DVD at the time of the Festival but didn't watch it until recently. Currently out as an import DVD

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