- 2 hr 14 min
Madadayo is a Japanese film from 1993 directed by Akira Kurosawa. The movie is based on a story written by Hyakken Uchida, a famous Japanese writer of the early 20th century. The movie follows the life of Professor Hyakken Uchida, a beloved professor of German literature who has just retired from teaching. The movie starts with a farewell party hosted by Uchida's former students, where he announces his retirement. However, Uchida's retirement does not mean that he is leaving his life as a teacher behind. Instead, he plans to continue mentoring his former students and maintaining his relationships with them while pursuing his own interests in writing and painting.
The rest of the movie is a chronicle of the events in Uchida's life after his retirement, with the focus on his relationship with his former students. The film is divided into a series of vignettes, each one depicting a significant event in Uchida's life, and the reactions of his former students and his wife to these events.
The title of the movie, Madadayo, is a traditional Japanese expression meaning "not yet" or "not quite." The expression is often used to express the feeling of anticipation or expectation, and it suggests that something is not quite finished. In the context of the movie, the expression is used to describe Uchida's attitude towards life, as he continues to pursue his passions and maintain his relationships with his former students.
Throughout the movie, Uchida is portrayed as a wise and kind teacher who deeply cares about his students. He is always ready to give advice and support, and his students look up to him as a mentor and a father figure. The movie explores the theme of the passing of time and the importance of human relationships, as Uchida's former students grow older and start facing various challenges in their lives.
One of the most striking aspects of the film is its visual style. Kurosawa uses a warm color palette and understated cinematography to create a cozy and intimate atmosphere. The movie is set mostly in Uchida's home, which is decorated with his paintings and other works of art, giving the viewer a sense of his personality and taste. The movie also features a beautiful musical score composed by Shinichiro Ikebe, which adds to the overall warmth of the film.
The acting in the film is superb, with Tatsuo Matsumura giving a nuanced performance as Uchida. Hisashi Igawa and George Tokoro, who play two of Uchida's former students, also give great performances, conveying a sense of both admiration and affection towards their beloved teacher.
In conclusion, Madadayo is a touching and heartwarming story that explores the importance of human relationships and the wisdom that comes with age. Akira Kurosawa's visual style and Shinichiro Ikebe's musical score add to the overall charm of the film, creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere. The film is a fitting tribute to a great writer and teacher, and it reminds us of the power of mentorship and the value of friendships that last a lifetime.