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Monster

Kaibutsu

Hirokazu Kore-eda | 2023 | 127 MINS
Japan | Subtitles
International Panorama: Japan

Hirokazu Kore-eda’s new feature sees a mother demanding answers from a teacher when her son begins acting strangely. A typically superb film from the Japanese auteur.

★★★★ The Guardian

In Detail

Young widow Saori (Sakura Ando) has begun to notice some odd behaviour in her fifth-grade son, Minato (Soia Kurokawa): impulsive haircuts, a trashed bedroom, pronounced moodiness, missing footwear.

When Minato comes home with tales of being hit by his teacher, Saori visits his school to confront the principal (Yūko Tanaka), but Minato is not the only one acting oddly here.

Structured after the perspective-shifting classic ‘Rashomon’, we see events from the perspective of various protagonists, all referred to in some way as the titular ‘monster’, and all resetting around one central sparking point.

Kore-eda, no stranger to working with children, has captured an indelible depiction of early adolescence, with Kurokawa and Hinata Hiiragi (his classmate) giving two profoundly genuine performances. This is quality cinema.


Hirokazu Kore-eda this season at New Park:
MONSTER
SHOPLIFTERS
KORE-EDA TALK

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