Japanese culture is unique in that it is always within the individual, aimed at self-reflection of the characters, at a visual analysis of the actions of key characters that turn the story on its head. The personal tragedy of the main characters is shown, their suddenly born friendship and the desire to work out their own problems, to cope with discomfort. In the film “Get behind the wheel of my car” directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, the search for the human soul is presented not so much as unity for the sake of a common goal.
What is “Drive My Car” about?
This movie may not be for everyone. It is intended only for “gourmet” viewers who prefer to “taste” each episode, find meaning in it, and also read between the lines in remarks. The film can be savored slowly, it goes 3 hours.
The main character, director Yusuke Kafuku, is diagnosed with a cataract in one eye. His illness was formed against the background of psychosomatics. After all, he forgave his wife of infidelity, turned a blind eye to it.
His wife, screenwriter Oto, after sex tells him stories, then reworks them into scripts. Another character in the film is a high school student secretly in love with a guy from school. Oto claims that this girl is the reincarnation of a lamprey (leech), in a past life she stuck not to a fish, but to a stone. Otho herself lost her taste for life after the death of her daughter. Family life for her now is a useless stone that does not feed her, but destroys her.
Asian theater is amazing. Yusuke puts on “Uncle Vanya”, having managed to subtly feel the Russian soul. But all the actors in this temple of Melpomene are of different nationalities: Japanese, Koreans, British. One of the actresses even used Korean sign language in her lines. This is a kind of allegory for the fact that sometimes close people are not able to hear and understand each other, as if they speak different languages.
Sometimes people are frightened by the need to talk with loved ones. Otho once wanted to talk to her husband in the evening (probably about her infidelity to her husband). Yusuke deliberately stayed late, and upon returning home, he found his wife dead from an attack. Therefore, for two years now, he reproaches himself for not coming home on time and not preventing the tragedy.
The director is invited to stage the play “Uncle Vanya” in Hiroshima. For safety reasons and in accordance with the rules, the theater assigns Misaki’s female driver to him. She, too, is haunted by guilt. Misaki hated her mother and didn’t even try to save her from the rubble of the house. In Yusuke’s small microcosm, another restless soul appeared in the form of a red car. Yusuke and Misaki soon became friends and shared their innermost thoughts with each other. At the ruins of Misaki’s house, the director assures her that things will get better as life goes on.
The meaning of the movie “Get behind the wheel of my car”
The plot gives viewers the opportunity to reflect on their lives. After all, various complexities of modern Japanese society of an acute social nature and its anxieties are demonstrated.
The film will be of particular interest to those who are curious about why the Japanese are so impassive and what their train of thought is. And the answer will be that they value a person in essence, but do not show it. They are laconic, but are able to show feelings such as respect or love.
In the film, it is felt that the Japanese are burdened by their loneliness and the frequent lack of mutual understanding.
“Get behind the wheel of my car” is a sad, contemplative film work, so you need to watch it in the right mood.
The film was nominated for an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. It is based on Haruki Murakami’s short story “Men Without Women”.
In this project, the director and screenwriters remembered how Hiroshima suffered terribly from the American nuclear bombing. Hiroshima was chosen for the production of the play, the action turns out to be international.
The project is wonderful in that viewing and analysis of the narrative is provided to the audience. The visual turned out to be wonderful, the whole story is fascinating, it is impossible to tear yourself away from the screen, because a lot of picturesque places are shown.
The actors did a great job with their swarms. Particularly remarkable from the aesthetic side is the performance of the actor who embodied the character of Yusuke Kafuku, who was even given the opportunity to have a meal on camera!
Cities, seas, mountains and forests are taken into the background by the operator’s camera. In the foreground is Yusuke’s bright red car. It can be noted in the frame of amazing Japanese roads of excellent quality.
Explanation of the ending of the movie “Drive My Car”
In the finale, Watari is in South Korea, where the coronavirus is raging. She went here in search of a better life, and Kafuku gave her a car. Obviously, a certain amount of time elapsed between this scene and the previous one.
Watari buys groceries and gets into a red Saab, where her pet is waiting for her. In the final shots, Watari is just driving the dog around the track. Now she has a four-legged friend, she worked through her past with Kafuku, removed the scar from her face that her mother left her. Now Vitari Misaki is not afraid of difficulties. In life, they sometimes happen, but the girl thinks only about a brighter future.
The phrase “Everything will be fine” is also pronounced in the final remarks of Sonya, the heroine of Uncle Vanya. The dumb girl brilliantly coped with this role. But even in sign language, the audience understands that she reassures Uncle Vanya, encouraging him to overcome everything and live on. This episode is deafeningly silent. There wasn’t even a soundtrack. But its meaning is so strong and deep that even no sound was required.
Undoubtedly, “Drive My Car” is a story about relationships and the search for inner harmony. The film is intended for those who are ready to dive into someone else’s story, penetrate into other people’s heads, get acquainted with the demons that devour a person from the inside.