The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community.
Run Time: 124 minutes
Well-known actor Juzo Itami was inspired by personal experience to write and direct a very untraditional depiction of a Japanese funeral in his first feature. The sombre subject is satirized with caustic humor from the start. An actor who knows nothing of the proper etiquette must officiate at his father-in-law's 3 day funeral ceremonies. Memorizing the formalities from a how-to videotape, he feverishly copes with his interfering mistress, the macabre undertaker and a saki-drinking, photo-taking wake, full of people who care little about the rites or the deceased. Itami balances the black comedy with touches of Ozu and shows remarkable visual mastery, including a great tracking shot of a row of posteriors tired from lengthy squatting.
Tsutomu Yamazaki, Nobuko Miyamoto, Kin Sugai, Shuji Otaki