[ Directed by ]
[ Produced by ]
• KAMEYAMA Chihiro
• MASUI Shoji
[ Cast ]
• IGARASHI Shinjiro SUZUKI Shigemitsu
• YOSHITAKA Yuriko SASAKI Yoko
• HAMADA Gaku KOBAYASHI Hiroki
[ Staff ]
• Screenplay: YAGUCHI Shinobu
• Cinematography: YANAGIJIMA Katsumi
• Music: Mickey YOSHINO
[ Production Company ]
Fuji Television Network, TOHO, DENTSU, ALTAMIRA PICTURES
[ Distributor (Japan) ]
[ Production Studio ]
Release Date: January 14, 2012
Running Time: 111 min
Screening Format: 35mm,DCP/ Blu-ray,HDCAM (English subtitles)
[ Story ]
The latest from writer-director Yaguchi Shinobu, who has produced a string of hits including Happy Flight with his unique viewpoint and outstanding comedic sensibility. Mickey Curtis (KAMIKAZE Ta XI}), credited as Igarashi Shinjiro, gives a wonderful performance as a stubborn old man in his first starring role.
Consumer electronics company employee Kobayashi (Hamada Gaku) is ordered to develop a bipedal robot, but fails miserably. He comes up with a plan to pass off a human in a suit as a robot, and finds an elderly man named Suzuki (Igarashi) who fits inside the suit perfectly, but…
[ Official Site ]
[ Film Festivals, Awards ]
• 2012 Hong Kong International Film Festival, I See It My Way
• 2012 Golden Horse Fantastic Film Festival, Nippon Gone Crazy
• 2012 Fantasia International Film Festival
• 2012 Sitges International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia, Official Fantastic Competition
Three shabby designers of a robot company receive from their very active boss (Ono Takehiko) the news that in a week the robot they are working on will be presented publicly. The agitation from which the three are taken, aware that their robot is not able to do much, generates an unconscious movement of one of them that starts the robot: the automaton shakes a bit ‘, goes to the window , falls and is destroyed. At the same time we see Mr. Suzuki (Mickey Curtis), an elderly man now a widower who would like to do theater and live in solitude without finding either in his daughter’s family (Wakui Emi), where everyone is too busy with their business, or in the elderly neighborhood center , where people are too mundane and stereotypical. Suzuki looks for some occupation and ends up in an audition organized by the three designers to find someone who dresses (literally) the role of the “dead” robot to save the job. He is hired and his performance as a robot is a great success also because it saves the life of a young enthusiastic spectator of robot (Yoshitaka Yuriko). It ends up in the newspaper and becomes a case, generating a series of other public commitments for the “robot” but the increase in media attention also increases the risk that the secret, or cheating if you prefer, is discovered .. ..
Yaguchi Shinobu is known and established as the creator of box office successes: his are Water Boys (2001), Swing Girls (2004) and Happy Flight (2008). After almost four years of silence returns with this film a little ‘different from its winning formulas, which expresses a comedy perhaps less pimping but more original, a bit’ detached and veined with melancholy.
On more than one occasion the film tears laughter and in general conveys a sense of pleasant freshness for all-new situations that it creates. As perhaps it is inevitable for an idea of this kind, the first part is more lively while the second is likely to fall into repetition but Yaguchi still manages to keep the narration in the tracks of intelligent and engaging entertainment. Even the overall meaning has all in all a positive value, where it seems to mean that even elderly and retired people do not necessarily have to adhere passively to pre-packaged solutions (the neglected grandfather, the elderly center) but, chasing their own curiosity, you can find a away to counter the loneliness that is often condemned by society and family.
Mickey Curtis has an expressiveness based on understatement that conveys a natural comedy, and even the three designers, in their mutual diversity (Hamada Gaku shy and scary, Kawai Chan outgoing and large, Kawashima Junya sweet and backward) are pleasant. Yoshitaka Yuriko in the part of the robot-loving student is recovered to a more “normal” role in relation to her age, after having recited in some television drama as a lover or disillusioned girl.