Hirokazu Kore-Eda's Film 'Still Walking'

867 Words4 Pages
Many people experience the pressures and expectations that accompany our interactions with family members. These encounters carry a mixture of anxiety and pleasure as we struggle to express who we are. Hirokazu Kore-eda’s 2009 film “Still Walking” portrays these pressures and expectations while also displaying glimpse at what may cause them. The film revolves around the struggle between the Yokoyama family, an everyday family afflicted by tragedy and traditional Japanese culture. The Yokoyama family comes together every year to commemorate the death of the eldest son, Junpei, who drowned accidentally 15 years ago while saving the life of another boy. His father Kyohei, a retired doctor, and mother Toshiko are joined by their surviving son Ryota,…show more content…
Some of the most dynamic conflicts within the family and Japanese social discourse as a whole come from Ryota and his relationship with his father. From the time the audience is introduced to Ryota, to the closing scene, Ryota is shown to protest and be irritated by any visitation to his parents’ home. He feels this way due to the fact that his lifestyle choices oppose Japanese discourse and his father disapproves of said lifestyle. Ryota is constantly frustrated and humiliated by his father’s praise towards Ryota’s decease older brother Junpei and looks down on his younger son in every way and lets him know that he is an embarrassment both professionally and personally. Standard Japanese culture puts great emphasis on an individual’s job and this directly correlates to not only social status but also family reputation. Kore-eda does an excellent job portraying the different views on this topic with different generations. Unlike the professions Kyohei and Junpei pursued, Ryota is an art restorer who has recently lost his job. Even with the lack of social respect towards his job and the constant berate of his father, Ryota chose to rebel against social discourse and become an art restorer due to the simple fact that he enjoys what he does. A pivotal scene in which best portrays this conflicting generational view is when

    More about Hirokazu Kore-Eda's Film 'Still Walking'

      Open Document