films seen
average score
Alive and kicking


Blind Witness

Mienai Mokugekisha
2019 / 128m - Japan
Blind Witness poster

Japan loves its police thrillers. They're not the most remarkable films and few of them make a splash overseas, but once you start paying attention to them it's obvious that every year there are at least a couple of high profile ones. Many of them can be traced back to literary works or TV series, but it seems Blind Witness is a stand-alone film.

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Not that it matters that much, these films tend to follow a very rigid structure, the main difference is that you get to spend a bit more time on the introduction of the characters. Natsume is a detective who quit the police force when she went blind, but when one night she hears a voice calling for help, she decides to investigate the possible crime herself.

The production is extremely slick, the pacing is solid and the main character's disability makes for some interesting tweaks on its basic formula. The film is extremely predictable and by the numbers though, so don't expect any big genre twists or novel takes. Blind Witness is a very solid police thriller, nothing less, nothing more.

Little Forest: Summer/Autumn

2014 / 111m - Japan
Little Forest: Summer/Autumn poster

A film split in two parts, each tackling a different season. Little Forest is part drama, part food porn. So much in fact that the drama feels more like filler, while the structure of the film is explicitly set up around the presentation of different dishes. If you ever feel like watching a film to de-stress, this is a perfect candidate.

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After the death of her mom, Ichiko returns to the countryside. City life isn't for her, instead she prefers to be surrounded by nature, looking around for edibles and turning them into delicious dishes. With a little help from her neighbors and the townsfolk, Ichiko quickly adapts to her new life.

Beautiful images of the Japanese countryside, a light and breezy soundtrack, loving closeups of pots and pans and a lot of tasty-looking dishes. It's all very soft and idyllic, though I have to say that 120 minutes was a bit much for me, especially since there's virtually no drama to speak of. Just dishes.


2002 / 126m - Japan
Drama, Romance
Laundry poster