(Maboroshi no hikari) 幻の光
Japan 1995. Dir: Hirokazu Kore-eda. 110 min. 35mm

The 1995 debut feature of now-reigning Japanese master Hirokazu Kore-eda, whose Shoplifters won the Palme d’Or at Cannes in 2018, is nothing less than sublime. Model-turned-actress Makiko Esumi stars as Yumiko, a young woman haunted by the seemingly inexplicable deaths of two important people in her life. Film critics, rapturous, invoked the hallowed likes of Ozu, Bresson, and Hou to describe what Kore-eda, previously a documentarian, had accomplished in this emotionally beguiling, spiritually evocative, and visually poetic work. Adapted from a novel by Teru Miyamoto, Maborosi took Venice’s Best Director prize and VIFF’s Dragons and Tigers Award. “A film of astonishing beauty and sadness” (Roger Ebert). “Perfect ... Maborosi is a pure kind of filmmaking" (Liam Lacey, Globe & Mail).



"A powerful film — an essential work of modern Japanese cinema."

Village Voice | full review