...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

May 06, 2007

Last Life in the Universe - 7

Kenji (Tadanobu Asano) just wants to kill himself. If only the people around him would let him. It is not that these people are nice and caring, they just have bad (or good) timing. Life for Kenji consists of being a student, working at the library and living with his laid back and often drunk brother. He is bored (and obsessive about cleaning and ordering his apartment) and at least death would mean something, maybe just to himself, but that would be enough. After witnessing his brother's killing in a mob hit and on the run he stays with Noi (Sinitta Boonyasak), who has just witnessed her sister's death. In their very different grieving process they start to connect and realize that life, rather love...is worth living.
Pen-Ek Ratanaruang has written and directed a beautiful and story about life, and the meaning that is made through interacting and knowing others. This film is set in Bankok, Thailand. The dialogue moves between Japanese, Thai, and English. The shots are meticulously taken and while the film moves slowly it holds your attention with dramatic as well as comedic elements.


Evan said...

I love this movie.

I need to watch it again sometime soon.

Anonymous said...

Sweet, glad you enjoyed this.

What most interests me with this film is the intersection of "Home" and what home means to Noi and Kenji. Each has fled their respective homes and tried to start anew, but Kenji acquiesces to the undercurrents of his past whereas Noi is able to escape. That decision of choosing cleanliness and all of its repercussions over the easy escape is something that is alternately haunting and maddening.

Love the fantasy reverie at the end, too, as it's incredibly romantic in its simplicity.