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Screening Asia (comparing two movies from different countries) - Essay Example

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Name: Instructor: Course: Date: Comparison Critique of Cape No. 7 and Departures Cape No. 7 is a Taiwanese musical-drama with elements of comedy and romance by Wei Te-Sheng in 2008. It is done in Mandarin Chinese and Taiwanese, although there are some significant parts that are done in Japanese…
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Screening Asia (comparing two movies from different countries)
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Screening Asia (comparing two movies from different countries)

Download file to see previous pages... Departure, on the other hand, is a Japanese drama written and directed in 2008 by Yojiro Takita. The film offers a look into the historic ceremony of “encoffining” in Japan, whereby professional morticians prepare and ritually clothe dead bodies prior to placing them in the coffin (Asai et al 31). While the two films follow contemporary themes popular with other Asian movies, they are unique in that they are grounded in aspects of culture that are peculiar to their countries of origin. All Japanese films need a hero and Daigo, the hero in Departures, is a likeable and impulsive young man who is easy to talk to and understand. Mika, his wife, adores and believes in him, quickly agreeing to return to the town where Daigo was born after they are struck by disaster (Miller et al 45). They move back to his old house that was left to him following his mother’s death, for which they have to pawn his cello in order to pay for the trip. This incident has negative impacts for him since he has no employment or instrument to make a living by, going back to where he started. He looks through the job ads and comes across one that sounds like a job in a travel company. However, after the owner Mr. Sasaki appears at the office where he goes to apply for the job, he finds out that it is an undertaking business, and he is offered the job and advance salary. He is then taken for a job orientation tour of the funeral home where the practice seems more humane than is usually shown in western movies. The ceremony is one of grace and precise ritual with sheets arranged to preserve the corpse’s privacy as it is dressed after washing. While most of the families are silent through it all, some of them show emotional outbursts and here begins Daigo’s life lessons. From his reluctance to tell his wife what job he is in, one can gather that undertaking is important as an occupation but not respectable (Miller et al 46). However, she finds out and tells him she must leave. Cape No. 7 is set in a little town South of Taiwan referred to as Hengchun, which is literally translated to “forever spring”. This town is sleepy, similar to the one that Daigo and his wife have to go back to; although, the town is on the seaside, and it has a pleasant beach. The residents of this town are also conservative, preferring to keep their old and traditional values, despite the fact that there are liberal tourists in the town going around the streets dressed in bikinis when holiday season comes (Wang 137). The town is also host to a yearly concert for rock artists held on the beach in order to attract the visitors. It is for this annual concert that some residents in the town come up with an idea to make a band, which they begin to do some three weeks before the start of the concert. Aga, who is a postman, acts as a new band’s lead vocalist. He also discovers several love letters from Japanese soldiers, which were written during the colonial period and not delivered. The address to which the letters are sent in Taiwan existed during the 40s and is no longer in existence, referred to as “Cape No. 7” Aga proceeds to deliver these letters prior to taking the stage in order to perform with his band. Although the original writer of the letters, who was a Japanese, was forced to leave the country and his lover following the end of colonization in 1945 (Wang 137), Aga persuades his girlfriend, who is also ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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