Distance (Hirokazu Koreeda, 2001)

Tonight I watched Distance. I've been watching all of Koreeda's movies, and since I hadn't heard anything about this one I have to admit I wasn't expecting something significant, but I was wrong. The film starts out quite loose, in Koreeda's characteristic documentary style, just a bunch of random people. But over time its gravity increases. Though not for the impatient, it turns out to be a strange and disturbing experience — but not in a surfacy way (though there are some beautiful scenes). It's through the people, and their feelings and their memories though a dark night of the soul, filmed in a realistic way, that we get snatches of the story, and as the audience we struggle to understand what really happened just as they do.

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