Sweet Bean (An)
Cert: PG Year: 2015 Length: 113 mins Language: Japanese
Cinema Handout (PDF 102KB)
Score: 82.97% Attendance: 115
"The full moon is high in the sky as Tokue soaks, drains, boils the beans for the first time, and waits patiently for the scent of the steam to change, talking to the beans all the while. It is an insult to hurry the process..." – Louise Keller, Urban Cinefile
After a winter of floods and a summer of political turmoil, it seems the right thing to do to offer you a peaceful, beautiful start to our Autumn season; what better way to do this than with a Japanese film? This is the first time we have opened with one as well...so what better way to bring a fresh look to our 36th season?
Sentaro runs a shop selling dorayaki - a sandwich of two small pancakes with red bean paste ('An') between them. The trouble is his An is very ordinary. Tokue (Kirin Kaki from the wonderful 'Still Walking' (2010)) has her own recipe and wants to work for him; once he has tried her An, he has to agree, despite the fact that Tokue is 76 years old. Her arrival brings with it an increase in sales; her joyful character brings out the best in Sentaro and one of his teenage customers, Wakana.
Director Naomi Kawase (we had her 'Still the Water' at the festival this year) uses these three characters to show how friendships matter and grow… whilst the second half of the story reveals huge hidden problems...
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