I’ve been really free lately, since school is over with so I’ve been enjoying my time not spent at work by relaxing. Mainly, watching movies and reading. So far I’ve watched Watchmen and Reservoir Dogs (two movies that I’ve already seen and like) and now, 愛のむきだし (or, Love Exposure):
I’ve been meaning to watch this movie for a long time, having heard good things and having it recommended to me by friends. The reason I’ve been putting it off though is the runtime of the film. This movie is literally over four hours long. More shocking still, the original cut was six hours long, but was “trimmed” at the request of the producers.
As far as other reviewers, this movie scored fairly high among critics. I don’t see this movie fairing well in front of American audiences, or even most Japanese people. Not because it’s not a good film, but because it deals with a lot of uncomfortable ideas and a lot of depravity. While perversion is a major theme in the movie, religion, love, and faith also weigh very heavily in the story.
Love Exposure is uncomfortable at times. It is sad, it is funny, it is violent, it is inspiring, it is sexual. What can one expect from a movie that is four hours long, other than everything? This two minute trailer does little to capture what the movie describes, and in fact I can do little to describe what the movie says.
This movie is, above all, thought-provoking. Even in the film’s lightest moments, there are a lot of things to consider. In the film’s darkest moments, it seems like everything anyone has ever pondered is brought to focus.
Aside from the plot, one thing this movie does better than any Japanese film I’ve seen is acting. To be honest, the acting in most Japanese movies I’ve seen (even major ones) is nothing compared to Hollywood actors. But, I’ve never seen actors emote like this. Through their facial expressions, the way they speak and how they move, you feel everything that character feels. It was a great experience.I really liked this film and found it entertaining. It was a fun watch from beginning to end. There were things I didn’t like about Love Exposure, mainly the ending. But it’s the journey that counts, not how you get there, I suppose. Would I recommend this? Depends. Not everyone has four hours to give to a movie, and this isn’t an easy movie to find outside of Japan. If you’re curious enough to find it, this will probably be a movie you’ll enjoy.