Sad Vacation

  • 136'
  • Japan
  • 2007
Aoyama Shinji is the director of several powerful films, but above all of the three and half-hour long and very impressive Eureka, with which he made an indelible impression in Cannes in 2000. Sad Vacation is more modest, not only because of its length of two and half hours, but also because it is primarily about evoking a special, fascinating mood that is maintained throughout the length of the film.
Asano Tadanobu, who has meanwhile grown to become a cult actor, plays the son of a runaway mother and also has an otherwise very complicated past. He once killed someone but a Yakuza friend was imprisoned for it. Now he is slowly but surely returning to society. Then he takes on caring for a Chinese illegal immigrant boy. As soon as the word Yakuza is mentioned, you could think of a genre film, but the maker continues to circle this subtly. The violence and morality of the gangsters is no more important than everyday life here. The film allows space for the feelings, thoughts and dreams of its characters. Rich characters with a past and a future, albeit doubtful.
The title of the film is taken from a song by Johnny Thunders, who wrote it in memory of Sid Vicious. Eureka also comprised many references to pop music and here too Aoyama remained faithful to himself. (GjZ)



Director
Aoyama Shinji
Country of production
Japan
Production Year
2007
Festival Edition
IFFR 2008
Length
136'
Medium
35mm
Original title
Saddo bakeshon
Language
Japanese
Producer
Kai Naoki
Production Company
StyleJam Inc.
Sales
StyleJam Inc.
Screenplay
Aoyama Shinji
Cinematography
Masaki Tamura
Editor
Oshige Yuji
Production Design
Shimizu Tsuyoshi
Sound Design
Kikuchi Nobuyuki
Music
Nagashima Hiroyuki
Cast
Asano Tadanobu, Ishida Eri