Director – Yukiko Mishima – 2020 – Japan – Cert. N/C 15+ – 122m
A woman trapped in a stultifying marriage experiences freedom and laughter in both returning to work and pursuing an extramarital relationship – played online in the Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme 2021 in the UK
Married to Shin (Shotaro Mamiya) with a six-year-old girl Midori, Toko (Kaho – Our Little Sister, Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2015) is a stay-at-home mum. Shin works with a trading company and judging by the size of the house is not lacking financially. Shin’s mother is a constant fixture in their home and the first time we see Shin come in from work of an evening, he rejects the meal his wife has prepared because he’s “not hungry” only to readily accept a favourite dish his mother has prepared.
That doesn’t bode well for the marriage. In bed she dutifully performs a blow job on him which satisfies him but not her. As she wipes away the results with a tissue, you feel that she’s not so much a wife, more a sort of sexual skivvy.
As his wife, Toko accompanies Shin to various work social events where she similarly appears to be little more than an appendage.… Read the rest