Paterson (2016)

Director: Jim Jarmusch
Writer: Jim Jarmusch
Cast: Adam Driver, Golshifteh Farahani, Rizwan Manji, Method Man, William Jackson Harper, Chasten Harmon, Barry Shabaka HenleyMasatoshi Nagase
Part of: Viennale
Seen on: 22.10.2016

Paterson (Adam Driver) is a bus driver in Paterson, New Jersey, and likes to write poetry in his spare time. His girlfriend Laura (Golshifteh Farahani) champions him and his art, as he does his best to support her in her music and her projects that mostly involve black and white decoration. Their life is quiet and full of routines, but even so, they have their ups and downs.

Paterson is such a wonderfully warm film, I left the cinema floating on cloud number 9 like after a really good first date (only I never had a first date that left me feeling quite like this). It’s a love letter to poetry and to Paterson, NJ, and it sees and shows the beauty of the everyday so clearly, I felt nothing but love for it.

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An [Sweet Red Bean Paste] (2015)

Director: Naomi Kawase
Writer: Naomi Kawase
Based on: Durian Sukegawa’s novel
Cast: Kirin Kiki, Masatoshi Nagase, Kyara Uchida, Miyoko Asada, Etsuko Ichihara
Seen on: 5.2.2016

Sentaro (Masatoshi Nagase) runs a small pancake shop mostly visited by school girls like the shy Wakana (Kyara Uchida) who often comes to visit and gets the misshapen pancakes from Sentaro. Sentaro is dutiful in his upkeep of the shop, but it is clear that his heart isn’t really in it. When one day the well over 70 years old Tokue (Kirin Kiki) shows up and asks whether she can fulfill her lifelong dream of working in just such a pancake shop by helping him out, Sentaro isn’t convinced she can actually handle things. But she convinces him with her home-made An, sweet red bean paste. But just as they start to really get into working with each other, the fact that Tokue has leprosy makes the rounds, which people see as a health risk.

An is a sweet film (no pun intended) with a slightly cheesy story that is built around a firm core of social criticism.

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