After Life (1998)
After people die, they spend a week with counselors, also dead, who help them pick one memory, the only memory they can take to eternity... (imdb)
Cast and Information
Directed By: Hirokazu Koreeda
Written By: Hirokazu Koreeda
Starring: Susumu Terajima, Kyôko Kagawa, Arata Iura, Sadao Abe, Kei Tani, Takashi Naitô, Tae Kimura, Erika Oda
AKAs: Wandâfuru raifu, Wonderful Life
After Life belongs to 38 collections
1. They Shoot Pictures 1,000 Greatest Films (2014 revision) (collaborative: moderated by Jehan - 27 stars)
2. They Shoot Pictures 1,000 Greatest Films (2017 revision) (collaborative: moderated by iconogassed - 22 stars)
3. Best of criticker: Drama (collaborative: moderated by avgcrtckr - 18 stars)
4. They Shoot Pictures 1,000 Greatest Films (2013 revision) (collaborative: moderated by rant1229 - 16 stars)
5. FIPRESCI Prize (collaborative: moderated by paulofilmo - 14 stars)
6. They Shoot Pictures 1,000 Greatest Films (2020 revision) (public: djross - 14 stars)
7. Doubling The Canon (collaborative - 13 stars)
8. TimeOut's 1000 films to change your life (collaborative: moderated by ppinocchio - 12 stars)
9. International Dictionary of Films and Filmmakers (collaborative: moderated by PeaceAnarchy - 10 stars)
10. Top 100 Spiritually Significant Films (collaborative - 10 stars)
11. Slate's 50 Other Best Films of the 1990s (public: TychoCelchuu - 9 stars)
12. Movies about memory (collaborative: moderated by Magb - 7 stars)
13. Skandies (collaborative: moderated by toro913 - 7 stars)
14. Doubling The Canon (2010 update) (collaborative: moderated by MMAlpha - 5 stars)
15. Japanese director (collaborative: moderated by iconogassed - 4 stars)
16. Roger Ebert's 4-Star Movies (collaborative: moderated by KirkJiggler - 3 stars)
17. Criterion Collection (Blu-ray and 4K) (public: PepeCamello - 3 stars)
18. The Lost Picture Show Podcast (collaborative: moderated by Coheed - 2 stars)
19. Cinéma Vérité (collaborative - 1 star)
20. Doubling the Canon (2011 update) (collaborative: moderated by MMAlpha - 1 star)
21. Doubling the Canon (2012 update) (collaborative: moderated by Cinephile - 1 star)
22. They Shoot Pics (TSPDT) 2013 new additions (collaborative: moderated by avgcrtckr - 1 star)
23. onderhond.com top 200 movies (collaborative: moderated by Bullt - 1 star)
24. Halliwell's Four Star Films (collaborative: moderated by MacSwell - 1 star)
25. Heaven (collaborative: moderated by BeeDub - 1 star)
26. Piero Scaruffi's list of great films (collaborative)
27. Foreign language films on Divicast (collaborative: moderated by Dunstan-xxx)
28. Filmspotting Ratings Project: Week 19 (public: PeaceAnarchy)
29. List: Filmspotting Ratings Project - Communal Watchlist (public: KasperL)
30. Movies to See: Drama (public: Lady Moe)
31. Asia/Pacific Top 100 (public: Sleepy Dogs)
32. 90s fantasy (public: kikifas)
33. Mr. Hallenbeck's Blu-Ray Collection (public: MrHallenbeck)
34. 5x10 Project (public: kendell)
35. Best Film of Each Decade (public: kendell)
36. Best Film of Each Year of My Life (public: kendell)
37. Sight & Sound (public: kendell)
38. C-1990 (public: cantahta)
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All Ratings | With Reviews
TCI | Percentile | Date Rated | # Stars (Reviews)
It's easy to tell Koreeda has a background in documentary, as half the film takes the talking head concept and turns it towards a fictional narrative. This is a quaint little film with a lot to love, as its high-concept is told through relatively simple aesthetics. The ending - an interesting take on the transcendence of Cinema - is unfortunately marred by a too-slow middle.
Recommended for fans of Haruki Murakami's novel Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World, or the anime series Haibane Renmei. This film is simple and documentary-like (lending credence to Koreeda's reputation as a modern Ozu), while the concept of an "old home" where people reflect on their lives after death is familiar and resonant. It also comments on the nature of memories and reality, film, etc. If the one thing you choose to remember is a dream, can it be real?
I usually enjoy films that explore the nature of memory, and this one is no exception. It also has an intriguing concept of the afterlife, and manages to avoid filling in every little detail without frustrating the viewer with too many unanswered questions. The movie occasionally gets a little sentimental, but never maudlin. Koreeda is a pretty good director, but his work has yet to really grab me.
After Life is a touching film with a lot of heart, and it never stoops to crass sentimentality. In fact, I don't believe there was a single crying scene, which is actually quite remarkable when you consider the subject matter. The concept behind the movie is the type that can haunt your thoughts for a long time. (I've been thinking about little else for the past few hours.) That alone is a pretty good achievement.
Quiet, beautiful, and moving. Seems so terribly authentic, too.
A quaint yet substantial humanistic drama exploring life and memory. As others have said, it isn't maudlin, but it is subtly emotive. By neither smothering the viewer in philosophy or melodrama, the film does itself a great service. It is -- in several ways -- an interactive film. It demands conscientious reflection, and the film gives plenty of space to enable us to do this. Artistic camerawork, attractive setting, and gentle steps of imagination bring After Life into its own plane of appeal.
Wandafuru Raifu is not your typical film about the afterlife. It plays like a documentary, with counselors interviewing the recently deceased about their happiest moment. The acting was terrific, some performances felt like in fact it was a documentary, the experiences of the individuals came to life, and it was further reinforced with the representation on tape of their memores. The film was simple, it told beautiful stories that took time to tell.
I tried very hard to like this. Most of the characters are well-defined, and it's quite touching in many cases. However, the story really dragged on and I don't like the concept of having only one memory to take into eternity - life is made up of many memories, good and bad, and I honestly think it's absurd that the people in this movie are expected to sum up their lives in one moment.
The concept is brilliant, and the non-sentimental documentary-like style is great... but the actual content is pretty dull. Like with every other Koreeda film I've seen so far, it just fails to hold my interest.
Wandâfuru raifu is the memory i have selected.
Its not perfect. Its too long and, despite the fact that its realistic minimalism is inspired, Koreeda misses the opportunity to use natural sound and light fully, which would have not only make the film more real but has an importance to the subject as memories are more than just the images. The ideas are still thoughtful though, and for a film to avoid sentimentality completely is an achievement. The depiction of the afterlife as an office block also is wonderfully unconventional.
Very touching, and a very clever concept to boot. The execution of the concept is even better, and the characters are all fleshed out wonderfully.
This was lovely. Gentle, caring, wholly unsentimental. I really loved the almost documentary feel the interviews had in the first act of the film (and was pleased to find out that rather than being all scripted some of them were actual non-actors reminiscing about their own lives - clearly Koreeda really succeeded in getting the feel that he was going for here!).
First of all, it was a boring film and hard to watch. Second, which supports my first argument, I felt like there was some plot holes in it, I didn't get the motivations of characters in many instances. Third, which supports both of my arguments, while the idea about this limbo situation before going to eternity is great, the world (the atmosphere, the place, the characters) Kore-eda created lacks the vision I was excepting and the story seemed to be too obviously sentimental and nostalgic.
|Average Percentile 68.23% from 676 Ratings|