Drive My Car (2021)

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Director: Ryusuke Hamaguchi Run Time: 179 min. Release Year: 2021 Language: Japanese

Starring: Hidetoshi Nishijima, Masaki Okada, Park Yurim, Reika Kirishima, Toko Miura

Country: Japan
Language: Japanese, English, Korean Sign Language, German, Mandarin, Tagalog, Korean, Indonesian

Winner of Best Screenplay, the FIPRESCI Prize and the Ecumenical Jury Prize at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival. Two years after his wife’s unexpected death, renowned stage actor and director Yusuke Kafuku receives an offer to direct a multilingual production of “Uncle Vanya” at a theater festival in Hiroshima. There he meets Misaki, the introverted young woman appointed to drive his car. As the premiere approaches, Yusuke is forced to confront painful truths and, with the help of his driver, faces the haunting mysteries his wife left behind.

Drive My Car, Japan’s official submission, made the Shortlist for Best International Feature at the 94th Academy Awards.

About the filmmaker:

Japanese writer and director Ryûsuke Hamaguchi studied film at Tokyo University of the Arts. He directed the feature films The Depths, Intimacies, Happy Hour, and Asako I & II, and co-directed a series of documentaries with Ko Sakai called “The Tohoku Trilogy” on the survivors of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. Hamaguchi co-wrote the screenplay for Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s period thriller Wife of a Spy, winner of the best director prize at Venice in 2020, and, in 2021, he earned the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at Berlin for Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy, available now in the Film Center’s virtual screening room.

Co-written by Hamaguchi and Takamasa Oe from Haruki Murakami’s short story of the same name, Drive My Car marks the first Best Screenplay win for Japanese filmmakers at Cannes.

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