Himizu ★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

While a film with significant flaws, Sono's latest does provide a compelling attempt to deal with the impact of a recent disaster on a society in an incredibly raw and visceral fashion. Sono's over-wrought, satire-verging-on-parody approach to character's interactions and emotions means that the characters and their relationships rarely ring true and are often repeated to the point of exhaustion (such as the teenage couple's violent displays of affection/playground games). However, what does succeed here and provide an undeniable source of interest is Sono's hashing out of the issues facing contemporary Japanese society: the affect of imposing a relentlessly positivist and individualist ideology upon an entire nation and how this impacts not only successive generations but also the welfare of the society as a whole. While never a filmmaker likely to appeal to everyone, Sono's swing-for-the-fences style has become familiar enough over the course of his last three films and is reliably counter-balanced by an earnest attempt to deal with complex thematic material making his films endlessly fascinating to me.