Memories of Matsuko
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Memories of Matsuko

General info
Original title: Kiraware Matsuko No Issho (嫌われ松子の一生)
Country: Japan
Year: 2006
IMDB Rating: 7.7 1770 votes
Plot: Shou, a twenty-years old studend, is abandoned by his girlfried who gived up, saying that he is undeserving boring man who she never was happy with. Out of grief, Shou is locked up in his appartment drowning in a sea of booze and porn. Unexpectedly, his self-destruction process is interrupted by his father. Dad presents him with the white-boxed ashes of a recently murdered aunt Matsuko, that Shou never knew he had as family rejected her even before his birth. The father explained, that Matsuko is a black sheep, who spent a worthless life and died alone. And as Shou is bored now he wants Shou to clean up the apartment where she spent her final days.

The Matsuko's apartment appears to be even more ukempt than Shou's one - heaps of rubbish, dust, scraps and press clippings filled all of its space. Cleaning up the stuff Shou soon becomes fascinated with Matsuko's past and hoping a mission will give his miserable life renewed purpose he sets about tracking down people she knew in order to find out more. Matsuko had everything in her colourful and tumultuous life, the ups and downs, happiness and disappointments, passages from unfavored schoolgirl to virtuous school teacher, from devoted wife to stripper, abused yakuza moll, murderess, jailbird and mentally disturbed bag lady.
Talking to a myriad of her acquaintances Shou piece together the story of long-lost aunt's life.

  • Japanese Academy Awards - Best Actress (Miki Nakatani), Best Editing (Yoshiyuki Koike), Best Music Score (Gabriele Roberto, Takeshi Shibuya)
  • Asian Film Award - Best Actress (Miki Nakatani)
  • Fant-Asia Film Festival - Best Asian Film (Tetsuya Nakashima)
  • Japanese Professional Movie Awards - Best Actress (Miki Nakatani)
Movie info
Language: Japanese
Colormode: Color
Running time: 127

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Memories of Matsuko (Kiraware Matsuko No Issho) trailer

Tags: Memories of Matsuko, Kiraware Matsuko No Issho, 2006, Japanese movies, Comedy movies, Drama movies, Musical movies, Mystery movies, asian movies

Featured reviews for

Memories of Matsuko
(overall rating: 4.2 out of 5 based on 5 reviews)
Midnight Eye, by Tom Mes source:
«Memories of Matsuko certainly is dazzling. It is quite a ride, even at a two-hour plus running time, and it contains career-best performances from Nakatani, Yusuke Iseya and A Snake of June's Asuka Kurosawa, who nearly steals the film as an unapologetically sexy convict / porn star / business woman...»
Twitch, by James Maruyama source:
«The film is framed almost like a dark “fairy tale” but Nakashima still manages to infuse his unique sense of visual wonder and comedy into the mix. There are brilliant moments where the film takes on an almost surreal feel--incorporating 2-D Disney-like animation, CGI and elaborate musical numbers which are reminiscent of the film "Moulin Rouge".»
Variety, by RUSSELL EDWARDS source:
«While the story fails to convince as either humor or drama, perfs are generally strong. Nakatani shines in a variety of scenes, where hair, make-up and costume technicians adapt her beauty to a wide array of styles.»
eFilmcritic, by Jay Seaver - 5/5 source:
«I don't want to describe "Memories of Matsuko" glibly. It would be so easy to point out the huge difference between the story's subject matter and the methods used to tell the story in a way that sounds like I'm being sarcastic, comes across as trying to show off how sophisticated I am because I love something off the beaten path, or simply makes it sound distasteful. It's too good a movie for that.»
Time Out London, by Tom Huddleston - 5/5 source:
«this is Nakashima’s most impressive achievement– for all its stylistic intensity and dizzying narrative overdrive, this is a profoundly compassionate, humanist work.»
ViewLondon, by Matthew Turner - 3/5 source:
«Enjoyable, stylishly directed and emotionally engaging Japanese drama with a terrific central performance by Miki Nakatani.»
SWIFTY, WRITING, by Edmund Yeo source:
«If done in a normal manner, this would've been a tearjerking melodrama that might earn tears or snorts of derision, but because this film is so creative in its execution that I'm not just affected by the story, I'm really more awed by the filmmaking from director Tetsuya Nakashima and the other technical aspects of the film.»
iSugoi, by DOUGLAS source:
«Memories of Matsuko is a magnificent film overall. With the combination of acting, visuals, and music, it essentially provides a journey in which there are no happy endings; rather, it explores notion that the journey is more important. A dark, twisted, and at times humorous film about life, Memories of Matsuko is a film I wholeheartedly recommend.»
VideoVista, by Richard Bowden - 8/10 source:
«there's a tension between what we are seeing, and what we understand, which gives the film interest. It's rare that one can recommend something to admirers alike of such diverse movies The Life Of Oharu, Amélie or the ironies of Douglas Sirk, but this is one such occasion.»

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Nakashima, TetsuyaNAKASHIMA Tetsuya
ROBERTO Gabriele


Nakatani, MikiNAKATANI Miki
as Matsuko Kawajiri
as Shou Kawajiri
Iseya, YusukeISEYA Yusuke
as Yoichi Ryu
Kagawa, TeruyukiKAGAWA Teruyuki
as Norio Kawajiri
Ichikawa, MikakoICHIKAWA Mikako
as Kumi Kawajiri
Kurosawa, AsukaKUROSAWA Asuka
as Megumi Sawamura
Emoto, AkiraEMOTO Akira
as Tsunehiro Kawajiri
as Shuji Okura
Takeda, ShinjiTAKEDA Shinji
as Onodera
Arakawa, YosiYosiARAKAWA YosiYosi
as Kenji Shimazu
Gekidan, HitoriGEKIDAN Hitori
as Takeo Okano
as Detective
Tanihara, ShosukeTANIHARA Shosuke
as Shunji Saeki
Takeyama, TakanoriTAKEYAMA Takanori
as Vice-Principal
Komoto, MasahiroKOMOTO Masahiro
as Man with Stand on School Trip
Katahira, NagisaKATAHIRA Nagisa
as Herself
Kadono, TakuzoKADONO Takuzo
as Principal
Kimura, MidorikoKIMURA Midoriko
as Tae Kawajiri
Hamada, MariHAMADA Mari
as Norio's wife
Honda, HirotaroHONDA Hirotaro
as Himself
Watanabe, TetsuWATANABE Tetsu
as Detective A
Takejo, AkiTAKEJO Aki
as Keeper of Prison
Kino, HanaKINO Hana
as Policewoman
Shimada, KyusakuSHIMADA Kyusaku
as Priest
Sakaki, HideoSAKAKI Hideo
as Megujmi's Head Bodyguard
HANEDA Masayoshi
Yamashita, YorieYAMASHITA Yorie
as Prisoner B
as Prisoner D (Memory)
Emoto, JunkoEMOTO Junko
Hoshi, YôkoHOSHI Yôko
Tsuchiya, AnnaTSUCHIYA Anna
as Prisoner C (Pride)
Yamamoto, HiroshiYAMAMOTO Hiroshi
as Detective B
Satô, SakichiSATÔ Sakichi
Kinoshita, HoukaKINOSHITA Houka
ÔKUBO Kayoko
as Okano's wife
Ai, RisaAI Risa
as Idol Singer
Eguchi, NorikoEGUCHI Noriko
as Prisoner A
Aoi, YûAOI Yû
Asada, KaoriASADA Kaori
as Ayano (as Bonnie Pink)
Ichikawa, MiwakoICHIKAWA Miwako
Kimura, KaeraKIMURA Kaera
as Singer
Kudo, KankuroKUDO Kankuro
as Tetsuya Yamegawa
Miura, MoeMIURA Moe
as Young Matsuko
Shibasaki, KouSHIBASAKI Kou
as Asuka
Yanaka, AtsushiYANAKA Atsushi
as Akagi

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