Riri Shushu no subete (2001)

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Riri Shushu no subete: Directed by Shunji Iwai. With Hayato Ichihara, Shûgo Oshinari, Ayumi Itô, Takao Osawa. The problematic lives of teenager students for whom the singer Lily Chou-Chou’s dreamy music is the only way to escape an alienating, violent and insensitive society.

“The one agreeable thing that can be said about Shunji Iwai is that he makes beautiful images. Lily Chou Chou is his most recent release (and let me state, since someone incorrectly wrote it is pronounced u0026quot;Choo Choou0026quot; it is not, it is spoken u0026quot;Shoo Shoou0026quot;), and one of his most coherent films. For some reason this movie seems to puzzle a lot of people… maybe it is the translation from English to Japanese (I watched the movie in Japanese dialog only, so I donu0026#39;t know if they killed it with subtitles or not), but the movieu0026#39;s plot is really not so complicated. If you know a little bit about Japanese life and culture, the emotions of youth, and devotion to an artist then you can watch this movie and understand it. Even for those who were confused by the plot, another one or two viewing should clear up any misunderstandings. Iwai does have some issues with complicating plot stories, or leaving out plot at all. As a writer he is great, but not perfect. As a director of film and photography he is mind blowing. The images that Iwai creates and displays to the audience are the most beautiful presented. Whether or not the story behind this movie shines to you, the images should be enough to blow your mind. Iwai uses re-occurring themes to present lovely contrasts. He also chose a beautiful selection of music to accompany his film, from Debussy to old Okinawan songs to Lily Chou Chouu0026#39;s own. If you pay attention to the gentle subtleties presented in this film, there is no way you can walk away with your life unchanged. I know this film has changed my life, and has become my main source of inspiration.”

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