A Movie – “Norwegian Wood” 1/19/12

January 19, 2012

I, again, went to Laemmle Theater’s Sneak Preview for “Norwegian Wood” in Beverly Hills. It has been advertised well so many people came! With a bit of drive from my part of town to Beverly Hills I got there only few minutes to the starting time. I got in the line. And the bad news!! The theater person told us there is no more tickets even though all of us signed up for them. I was saved by the lady front of me. We chatted while we were waiting. She went to contest for our fate, and told the theater person I drove a long distance to come. She must be an important person or she has a power to make things. So 2 of us got in the theater leaving a dozen of people outside. I felt bad— but I appreciated the lady’s courage and strength!
This movie is based on Haruki Murakami’s best selling novel, and this book is one of my favorites. And the main actor, Kenichi Matsuyama is, with my confession, handsome and cute (!) I was super looking forward to seeing this movie. The photography is beautiful, the acting is nice, and the music is excellent, but the theme of the story is entirely different than a book. As if they got 100 of 100 of hours of films and during the editing they could not make a good decision which parts to be discarded. The film became very much sex oriented which I don’t remember from the book. I was thinking it may leave an entirely different impression if people never read the book.  And the editing is not smooth–. They took of many of my favorite parts, like a cucumber with Midori’s (Kiko Mizuhara-a fantastic work!) father—-.  Reiko, a friend of Naoko (Rinko Kikuchi-she is beautiful and has a nice atmosphere, but it seems little bit old for this role), is a plain and warm person in the book, but in the movie she is a beautiful and attractive woman. It did not seem that was Reiko san. The story is in Tokyo, society changing, students’ protesting activities/rallies,  economical development—,  in 1960’s, depicting Watanabe’s love and life in past and future. Of course movies are  different art form than books and we may need to avoid comparing them. But Murakami’s novel is so good that I feel I need to read a book again. PS it was fun to find Ryuichi Sakamoto’s YMO’s 3 members in the movie!

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