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“If only some people can have it, that's not happiness. That's just nonsense. Happiness is something anyone can have”

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An enigmatic and tender tale in three parts, Monster is the latest great work from modern master Hirokazu Kore-eda (Shoplifters, Broker), scored by the late great Ryuichi Sakamoto. When her young son Minato (Sōya Kurokawa) starts to behave strangely, Saori (Sakura Andō) feels that there is something wrong. Discovering that a teacher is responsible, she storms into school demanding answers only to be met with denial from Minato's teacher and difficult formalities from the faculty. Witnessing the same events from three different perspectives – parent, teacher, child – the unexpected truth is revealed.

Winner: Queer Palm & Best Screenplay

Cannes Film Festival 2023

“A film created with a great moral intelligence and humanity”

The Guardian

“A delicate web of compassion and embattlement: three separate views of one stretch of momentous time, spun and re-spun with care and craft”

The Los Angeles Times

Sakamoto’s music complements Kore-eda’s keen direction and general consideration for individuals who tend to struggle in private


Why You Should See This Film

Winning the Best Screenplay award at Cannes for writer Yuji Sakamoto’s emotionally complex and deftly crafted script, Monster is easily Hirokazu Kore-eda’s greatest film since Shoplifters. With the film dedicated to the late great composer, Ryuichi Sakamoto’s final score – mostly made up of previous work as he was only well enough for two original pieces – is quiet, minimal and deeply affecting, imbuing scenes with a potent pathos and a shroud of mystery. Kore-eda proves again to be one of the best directors of children working today, prompting two terrific performances from Sōya Kurokawa and Hinata Hiiragi. A film that holds its secrets close, Monster rewards patience and an eye for detail with a gradual enlightenment that cuts straight to the heart in its final moments.

Hirokazu Kore-eda
Sakura Andō, Eita Nagayama, Sōya Kurokawa, Hinata Hiiragi, Yūko Tanaka
126 minutes
Japanese with English subtitles

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