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Movie Review: Nobody Knows

Alternate Title: Home Alone

Story: Suffer the little children would have been a more appropriate title for this haunting film about four siblings who have been abandoned by their mother. Based on a recent true story that happened in Tokyo, director Hirokazu Kore-eda hits a home run with this powerful story.

We quickly learn that the kids (the oldest 12) have four different fathers and their mother has a mere fleeting interest in their well being. We meet them as she is moving into a new apartment and claiming that she has only one child. The two youngest are smuggled into the apartment in suitcases and the oldest girl secretes herself later in the night. I do not want to tell you too much of the story because I am not a spoiler.

Suffice it to say that I can't shake this picture from my mind and heart. How these kids survive after they are abandoned is nothing short of riveting cinema. Very little is conveyed through dialogue which makes the film even more powerful.
This film is about the meaning of family, society's role in the welfare of the neediest and the power of love.

Go see it and be enriched. (Be warned -- this is not a Hollywood feel good film.)

Acting: Young Yuuya Yagira won Best Actor award at Cannes this year for his amazing performance. How director Kore-eda got the performances he did out of this young group of nonprofessionals is nothing short of amazing.

Predilection: None.

Critters: A cat and an ant.

Food: How these kids survive and what they eat is a large part of the film.

Visual Art: Kids drawings that break your heart.

Blatant Product Placement: There were lots of Japanese products that I could not identify. The two American products I spotted were Coca Cola and Sesame Street Crayons.

Theater Audience: Fairly crowded for a first week early show.

Sappy Factor: Sappy would have been appreciated.

Drift Range: I wanted to look at my watch because I innately knew it was running over the two hour Lobo rule but I did not want to miss a beat.

Squirm Scale: I ached and squirmed for these poor kids.

Oscar Worthy: Yes.

Nit Picking: I normally would complain about the length of the film, but I refrain.

Big Screen or Rental: Big screen for sure.

Length: 20 minutes over the two hour Lobo rule.

LOBO HOWLS: 9 (my first of the year)