[ Directed by ]
[ Produced by ]
• MATSUZAKI Kaoru
• TAGUCHI Hijiri
[ Cast ]
• FUKUYAMA Masaharu NONOMIYA Ryota
• ONO Machiko NONOMIYA Midori
• MAKI Yoko SAIKI Yukari
• Lily FRANKY SAIKI Yudai
[ Staff ]
• Screenplay: KORE-EDA Hirokazu
• Director of Photography: TAKIMOTO Mikiya
• Lighting: FUJII Norikiyo
• Sound Recording: TSURUMAKI Yutaka
• Editor: KORE-EDA Hirokazu
[ Production Company ]
Fuji Television Network, Amuse, GAGA
[ Distributor (Japan) ]
[ Production Studio ]
Release Date: September 28, 2013
Running Time: 121 min
Genre: Drama, Feature
Screening Format: DCP
Screen Size: American Vista (1:1.85)
Sound Processing: Dolby SR,5.1ch
[ Story ]
Popular actor Fukuyama Masaharu in Suspect X
(2008) takes on his first role as a father, under the direction of Kore-eda Hirokazu
Nobody Knows (2004). It questions the definition of a true family through a story about children swapped at birth. Winner of the 2013 Cannes Film Festival’s Jury Prize and Ecumenical Jury Prize and Audience Award at San Sebastian International Film Festival.
Ryota (Fukuyama) and his wife Midori (Ono Machiko) learn that their son was swapped at birth with another boy at a maternity hospital. They enter into talks regarding an “exchange” with the other parents involved, Yudai (Lily Franky) and Yukari (Maki Yoko), but Ryota becomes uncertain.
[ Official Site ]
[ Film Festivals, Awards ]
• 66th Cannes Film Festival, Jury Prize, Special Mention of Ecumenical Jury
• San Sebastian International Film Festival, Audience Award
• Vancouver International Film Festival, Audience Award
• Sao Paulo International Film Festival, Audience Award
• Abu Dhabi Film Festival, Child Protection Award for Best Script
＜Principal Festival Screeningsl＞
• Toronto International Film Festival
• New York Film Festival
• Busan International Film Festival
• BFI/London Film Festival
• AFI Fest
Ryota (Fukuyama Masaharu) is a successful architect, dedicated to work and family, composed of his wife Midori (Ono Machiko) and his six-year-old son Keita. Their life seems perfect and comfortable, all concentrated around the education of the only child. One day, however, a doctor from the hospital where he was born calls the two parents to tell them terrible news, that their baby was exchanged in the crib just after birth with another baby born the same day. Their real son was lovingly raised by Yudai (Lily Franky) and his wife Yukari (Maki Yoko), who meet and start dating. Thus began their long diplomatic process of rapprochement, until the final decision was made to exchange the children again and start each one’s life again.
“The whole project started with the idea of making a film with Masaharu Fukuyama. I took several stories into consideration but the desire to make him act in the role of a father was present from the beginning “explains Koreeda who returns to investigate the relationship between children and adults but through an unusual, once again extreme, even if the his gaze remains enigmatic and empathic at the same time, near and far from his characters, here more than ever the knot of the whole plot.
In describing the profound change imposed by events in the lives and habits of the two families (which could not be more different), Koreeda seems to seek the right distance between himself and this microcosm, which he portrays through insignificant events of daily life, dialogues, gestures, silences, empty and full of every day. A recurrent, repetitive and effective scheme, because it insinuates itself into thoughts and gives the spectator a continuous surprise and a growing but discrete wait.
The passage of time is marked by the progress of the months and the colors, from November to August, from the inert light of winter to the warm light of summer. The school, the work, the Sunday exchanges of trial, the anxieties of all, kept hidden under a precarious regularity. The newspaper that progressively changes its sign, the rhythm that loses its rigid compactness, while the story melts into a continuous “lasting”.
Words are the real treasure of this film, in the director’s ability to make it “what”, transforming the coldness of the beginning into energy, the composure into happiness, the instinct of diplomacy. Like the play of the photographs that exchange father Ryota and his son Keita, in which they discover having the same look and the same expression, field and reverse side of an “irregular” family, which will be broken up and then reunited following a tortuous path, always made of departures and approaches. When Ryota and Midori return from Yudai and Yukari to recover their son, Keita flees, immediately followed by the false / true father. A long way to twilight where their pace is flanked slowly and not without fractures. After so much rigor and silent sequence, after so much observation, now serves the rebellion, that new way of looking at things and turning the meaning of life over.