Japan Society of Fairfield County
Movie 2010

Sunday, December 4, 2010
Okuribito (Departures)

      Winner of Best Foreign Language Film at the 81st Academy Awards and 10 awards at the 32nd Japan Academy Awards.
      Departures (Okuribito) takes a sensitive look at life through the rituals of death.  Departures follows the experiences of a young undertaker as he grows into his work. Daigo, a down and out cellist and his wife leave Tokyo and move back to his sleepy hometown. He answers a help-wanted ad for what he thinks is a travel agency, but it turns out to be a Japanese funeral home. Taking the job anyway, he begins a new life as an Japanese mortician (nokanshi) under grisly owner Sasaki. Despite his initial  fears and misgivings about cleansing and clothing corpses, Daigo soon discovers the job and the town suit him just fine. Carefully preparing the departed for their final journey with a musician's precision, he finds a greater appreciation and understanding for life. The stigma of the profession, however, is not lost on his wife, and his choice of work gradually takes toll on their marriage.
Directed by Takita Yojiro, elegant scoring by Hisaishi Joe, starring Motoki Masahiro as Daigo, Hirosue Ryoko as his wife, and veteran actor Yamazaki Tsutomu as Sasaki.
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