Our Tokyo Sonata

OUR very own Australia-Japan Society aims to promote friendship between the peoples of Australia and Japan - and what better way to do it than by screening some of Japan's finest cinema?

Tokyo Sonata, directed by the infamous Kiyoshi Kurosawa, and winner of Cannes Grand Jury Prize in 2010, is the story of a Japanese household secretly teetering on the edge of collapse.

Businessman Ryuhei Sasaki (Teruyuki Kagawa) is the principal breadwinner of a seemingly happy family in Tokyo, with teenage sons Takashi (Yu Koyanagi) and Kenji (Kai Inowaki), and wife, Megumi (Kyoko Koizumi).

But what Megumi and her children don't know is that Ryuhei is out of a job; his position was outsourced to a company in China, and he's too ashamed to tell his family the truth.

Ryuhei leaves home every morning as if he's going to the office, but instead visits employment centres in hopes of landing a new job.

Megumi, who is not as well adjusted as she appears, one day spots her husband in a soup line while running errands, and discovers the truth about his employment status, though she doesn't dare confront him.

Takashi and Kenji begin drifting away from their emotionally distant parents - Takashi wants to join the army, and Kenji begins spending his lunch money on music lessons.

It's a beautiful looking, interesting film - and despite perceived cultural differences, it's a familiar story in these turbulent economic times.

Tokyo Sonata (rated G) screens at Cavanbah Centre, 6pm, Friday June 22, $10 (including supper).

For more information phone 6652 2393.

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