Films & Schedules

  • Still Walking

  • Hirokazu Kore-eda

114 minutes

Production Company:
Cine Qua Non
Kato Yoshihiro, Taguchi Hijiri
Hirokazu Kore-eda
Production Designer:
Toshihiro Isomi, Keiko Mitsumatsu
Yutaka Yamazaki
Hirokazu Kore-eda
Yutakaa Tsurumaki, Shuji Ohtake
Principal Cast: Yoshio Harada, Kirin Kiki, Hiroshi Abe, Kazuya Takahashi, Shohei Tanaka

International Sales Agent:
Celluloid Dreams

TIFF Tags: Asia  Family  Aging, Illness/Death 

Saturday September 0609:30PM VARSITY 8 Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist
Monday September 0809:15AM SCOTIABANK THEATRE 1 Best Bet Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist
Thursday September 1110:15PM ISABEL BADER THEATRE Best Bet Add Film to MyTIFF Filmlist

Engraved onscreen with the intense luminosity of a bright summer day, Hirokazu Kore-eda's latest meditation on family drama is a quiet masterpiece that seems to originate from a deeply personal yet universal experience of regret.

Still Walking conjugates the languages of poetry and documentary into a compelling account of modest joys and gentle resentments. Draped in the colours of memories that will not fade, the film keeps a slightly off-centre focus on echoes of the past, and concentrates on recording, with genuine simplicity, the mundane events of a family reunion.

A picture of the deceased Junpei dominates the Yokoyama family house from a small shrine at the centre of the living space. Little seems to have changed since his accidental death at sea, but opaque layers of time appear to have settled everywhere: on the medical examining room of his long-retired father, the respected yet surly doctor Kyohei (Yoshio Harada); on the loose tiles in the bathroom; even on the kitchen, the undisputed kingdom of his energetic mother Toshiko (Kirin Kiki). Everything seems to have aged slowly but inexorably, yet the intergenerational dynamics and conflicts within the family have remained unchanged. Ryota (Hiroshi Abe), the youngest Yokoyama son, is now forty years old, but has never managed to live up to his parents' expectations. A distant affection links him to the family that has always disapproved of his lifestyle and modest career restoring paintings, and who now look down reproachfully on his recent marriage to a widow. Having never completely recovered from the loss of Junpei, the family reunites to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of his premature death, a failed attempt to exorcise grief with a festive gathering and an elaborate lunch.

Although reminiscent of Yasujiro Ozu's masterpiece Tokyo Story, Still Walking has a distinctive personality and a unique style. Exposing with levity and grace even the slightest murmurs of his characters' hearts, Kore-eda draws a sharply detailed family portrait that glows with warmth and understanding.

Giovanna Fulvi

Hirokazu Kore-eda was born in Tokyo and graduated from Waseda University. He began his career making documentaries under the auspices of the TV Man Union, an independent television production company. His first feature, Maborosi (95), appeared at the Festival as part of the Asian Horizons programme, and he has returned to Toronto with his subsequent features After Life (98), Distance (01), Nobody Knows (04), HANA (06) and Still Walking (08).

Cadillac People's Choice Award