TOKYO SONATA is a portrait of a seemingly ordinary Japanese family. The father who abruptly loses his job conceals the truth from his family; the eldest son in college hardly returns home; the youngest son furtively takes piano lessons without telling his parents; and the mother, who knows deep down that her role is to keep the family together, cannot find the will to do so. From the exterior, all is normal and the same. But somehow, a single, unforeseeable chasm has appeared within the family, only to spread ever so quietly and quickly to disintegrate them.
Cannes Un Certain Regard - Jury Prize
Osian's Cinefan - Best Film
Mar Del Plata IFF - Best Director
Asian Film Awards - Best Film, Best Screenwriter
San Sebastian IFF
Sao Paolo IFF
Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands
In the next couple of years, THE EXCITEMENT OF THE DO-RE-MI-FA GIRL and GUARD FROM UNDERGROUND were released and Kurosawa attracted enthusiastic fans. In 1992 Kurosawa won a coveted spot in the Sundance Institute Screenwriter’s Lab with his original screenplay CHARISMA. His SUIT YOURSELF OR SHOOT YOURSELF! series (1995-1996) and THE REVENGE series (1997) created more avid Kurosawa fans. Following the debut of CURE at the 1997 Tokyo International Film Festival, the film achieved international recognition and was theatrically released in many parts of the world. Kurosawa went on to win the Best Director prize for CURE at the Yokohama Film Festival.
In 1999, LICENSE TO LIVE screened in the Berlin Film Festival Forum, and CHARISMA was highly acclaimed at the Cannes Film Festival Directors’ Fortnight. Later that same year BARREN ILLUSION was screened at the Venice International Film Festival. In 2001 PULSE screened at the Cannes Film Festival in Un Certain Regard, where it won the Critics’ Prize. Later that year, the film also garnered the Critics’ Prize at the Sitges Film Festival.
Two years later, Kurosawa returned with BRIGHT FUTURE, screening In Competition at the 2003 Cannes International Film Festival. That same year DOPPELGANGER, about a man who faces his alter-ego, was selected as the opening film for the Pusan International Film Festival. RETRIBUTION, finished in 2006, was officially selected for the Venice Film Festival.