Part of the 2019 season: People Still Call It Love

Three Stories of Love

Director Ryosuke Hashiguchi

Cast: Atsushi Shinohara, Toko Narushima, Ryo Ikeda

© Shochiku Broadcasting / Arc Films

(Koibito-tachi, 恋人たち)

UK Premiere

Offering a glimpse into the microcosm of relationships within Japanese society, three vignettes tell very different stories of love, loss and rejection.

Unfulfilled and exploited housewife, Toko (Toko Narushima), is trapped in a loveless marriage with a husband disinterested in how his mother treats his wife. An encounter with a sympathetic scam artist offers respite from a life lacking all affection.

An intuitive bridge inspector (Atsushi Shinohara) had been widowed in a brutal and random murder of his wife three years prior. Grief-stricken and obsessed with fantasies of revenge, his heartbreak sends his life in a downward spiral.

Shinomiya is an elite lawyer with an inflated ego who enjoys mistreating his younger male lover. But when his life comes crashing down, he seeks refuge with a school friend he once loved.

Named the best Japanese film of 2015 by Kinema Junpo and Mark Shilling of The Japan Times, this tenderly crafted work puts loneliness of modern life on full display. The emotional damage incurred by the desperate protagonist trio is made all the more relatable by the acting of three non-trained newcomers who were picked specifically for the roles and had the script written around their personalities by Hashiguchi.

「ぐるりのこと。」「ハッシュ!」の橋口亮輔監督が、心に傷を持つ男女の再生を描いた人間ドラマ。通り魔殺人事件で妻を失ったアツシ、満たされない日々の中、突然現れた男性に心が揺れる主婦の瞳子、同性の親友への思いを秘める四ノ宮。幸せを求めて彷徨う3人の心情を丁寧に描き出す。(Japanese synopsis by Eikoku News Digest)

2015/140 min/English Subtitles

Past screenings