Archive of films Still the Water / Futatsume no mado
Japan / France / Spain
2014, 119 min
With an empathetic take on life’s ups and downs, this semi-autobiographical rendering looks at the gradual maturation of a 16-year-old boy and girl from different families. Contemplatively narrated, the picture relies on unobtrusive poetics and an unforced portrayal of beauty, bitterness, and the elusive nature of life.
Set on a tropical Japanese island, the film is a slowly-unfolding meditation on coming of age and the trials of life. Despite lacking parental guidance, 16-year-old Kaito and his girlfriend Kyoko try to find their place in the world. While Kaito suffers from the absence of his father, who moved to distant Tokyo after Kaito’s birth, Kyoko must come to grips with her mother’s terminal illness. The gently flowing, poetic film betrays the director’s sense for capturing the moment, and her meticulous depiction of her characters’ inner worlds. At the same time, the scenes possess the magic of the intangible, they discover the beauty of ordinary moments, and convey the pain and loss that are an integral part of life. Aesthetically captivating, the film – which was shot in the home of Kawase’ ancestors – is also a highly autobiographical work reflecting the director’s own life experiences.
About the director
Naomi Kawase (b. 1969, Nara, Japan) began shooting on 8 mm and 16 mm while studying in Osaka. Her early films, through which she comes to terms with having been raised by her grandparents, were well received by international audiences. At the 1997 Cannes IFF, she became the youngest winner of the Camera d’Or, which she received for her feature-length debut Suzaku (Moe no suzaku), which was also shown in Karlovy Vary. Firefly (Hotaru, 2000) won an award at the festival in Locarno. Her mysterious drama The Mourning Forest (Mogari no mori, 2007) took the Grand Prix at Cannes and screened, along with her dreamy relationship tale Hanezu (Hanezu no tsuki, 2011), at Karlovy Vary. Kawase has also been recognized for her documentary work. Still the Water was screened in competition at this year’s festival in Cannes.
About the film
|Dir. of Photography:||Yutaka Yamazaki|
|Producer:||Masa Sawada, Takehiko Aoki, Naomi Kawase|
|Production:||Comme des Cinémas|
|Coproduction:||Arte France Cinéma, Luis Miñarro, Kumie, Asmik Ace|
|Cast:||Nijiro Murakami, Kyoko Jun Yoshinaga, Isa Miyuki Matsuda, Tetsu Tetta Sugimoto|
Film Director / Producer