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The approach makes good aesthetic sense in that Guterson's story couches courtroom drama in dreamy textures, and Hicks is determined to reflect that even if it means turning an audience's idea of narrative on its head. He also gets a lot of help from the weather in the Pacific Northwest: the setting is one of Washington State's San Juan Islands, where rain embraces earth and sky in a singular, introverted personality. There, a Japanese American war hero (Rick Yune) stands accused of murdering a white fisherman in the years following World War II. His wife (Youki Kudoh) is the former childhood sweetheart and lover of a local newspaperman (Ethan Hawke) whose bitterness over the loss--as well as his helplessness during the internment of Japanese Americans, and the crusading legacy of his journalist father (Sam Shepard)--prevents him from coming to the defense of the accused man.
Layered emotions, layered sensations, layered clouds. This is historical fiction of a sort that works best as an experience of time's relativity: flowing, stopping, trickling. Ironically, the film's most commercial element, the trial, is the least interesting aspect, though old pro Max Von Sydow makes those scenes great fun as a wily defense counsel. --Tom Keogh
Perhaps it's because I read the book first that I did not enjoy the story as portrayed in the movie. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Sacia Vik
a movie that shows the evil rhetoric of the sophist to entrap the simple and naive.Published 3 months ago by Marilyn
I enjoyed every minute of it.
sad but wonderful story. Brought to light again the unfair treatment the Japanese
American citizens received because they looked different. Read more
I loved this movie rich in a childhood love story, prejudice, and historical war time. The love story returns when Ishamael tries to convict or clear Youki's husband as a reporter... Read morePublished 3 months ago by ornerythang