Snow Falling on Cedars 2000 PG-13 CC

Amazon Instant Video

Available in HD
(189) IMDb 6.8/10
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A murder trial has upset the quiet community of San Piedro, and now this tranquil village has become the center of controversy. For Ishamael Chambers (Ethan Hawke), a local reporter, the trial strikes a deep emotional chord when he finds his ex-lover is linked to the case. As he investigates the killing, he uncovers some startling clues that lead him to a shocking discovery.

Ethan Hawke, Yûki Kudô
2 hours, 8 minutes

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Thriller, Romance, Mystery
Director Scott Hicks
Starring Ethan Hawke, Yûki Kudô
Supporting actors Reeve Carney, Anne Suzuki, Rick Yune, Max von Sydow, James Rebhorn, James Cromwell, Richard Jenkins, Arija Bareikis, Eric Thal, Celia Weston, Daniel von Bargen, Akira Takayama, Ako, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Zak Orth, Max Wright, Sam Shepard, Caroline Kava
Studio Universal Studios
MPAA rating PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Captions and subtitles English Details
Rental rights 24 hour viewing period. Details
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Other Formats

Customer Reviews

Very well done and excellent, excellent acting.
If I hadn't read the book, there were some things in the movie that might not have been as easy to understand.
Marie James
With that said, the plot is well executed and the telling of the story in flashbacks seemed to work well.
R. G. Myers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

48 of 49 people found the following review helpful By Matt on August 21, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
As a reader of the excellent book by author David Guterson, I didn't quite know what to expect from a movie version. A book of this caliber and structure is not a book easily made into a movie. But through the collective efforts of the director Scott Hicks and great acting on the parts of Ethan Hawke, Max von-Sydow, and James Cromwell, the majestic beauty of the book comes alive on the silver screen. The only visible problem with the film would be the fact that some people simply won't get it. There are people who just enjoy watching a movie to be entertained, not to have to follow tough plot lines. These are the people that need to avoid a film such as Snow Falling on Cedars. The various plot lines and sub-plot lines revolve around the death of a fisherman, Carl Heine and the ensuing trial of the Japanese man, Kazuo Miyamoto, accused of killing him. The movie takes place during the trial, but flashbacks are heavily used during the testimony of the victim's mother, Etta Heine, as with all the other witnesses. Throughout the movie a different plot line emerges, one of more power and one of love. The plot line revolves around a local reporter named Ishmael Chambers and of his love for the accused man's wife, plus his inescable feelings of loss and regret. Circumstances tore them apart leaving Ishamel to wonder about what might have been. A beautiful story, but one that should only be watched by people that can appreciate the intricacy of the plot.
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33 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Daniel J. Hamlow HALL OF FAME on July 3, 2004
Format: VHS Tape
I can attest to the adage that the first person one falls in love with is forever, regardless of whether that person gets married to someone else or not. Well, in Snow Falling On Cedars, that sort of past comes back to haunt young reporter Ishmael Chambers when he discovers the husband of his first love Hatsue is being tried for the murder of fisherman/husband/father Carl Heine. The case for the prosecution is that Kazuo, Hatsue's husband, murdered Carl with a flat wooden object, such as a kendo stick (wooden swords used in stick fighting), and all because of the loss of seven acres of land owned by Kazuo's father when Kazuo's family was interned during WW2. Kazuo had demanded the return of the land, but because of two payments missed, his family forfeited the land, which came into Carl's possession. He is defended by an elderly lawyer, Nels Gudmundsson (veteran Swedish actor Max von Sydow in a strong performance), who as a Scandinavian, detects the race issue here. Pearl Harbor has not been forgotten, in other words. All the while, Ishmael sits high up on the balcony of the trial room, observing the defendant and his wife. He is clearly still bitter about the past, as he might have ended up with Hatsue had not circumstances dictated otherwise. This bitterness is manifested when he sits on some information key to Kazuo's defense.
Set in the fishing village of San Piedro, somewhere in the Pacific Northwest, the film shuttles back and forth between the present, in the 1950's, and the past, in the late 30's to 40's. The film shows Ishmael falling in love with Hatsue Imada, a Japanese girl, and both their mothers disapproving of interracial relationships.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By carol irvin TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 15, 2000
Format: DVD
I enjoyed this movie much more than the novel upon which it was based. This is very unusual for me as it is usually the reverse situation. What I liked best is epitomized on the cover of the box. It shows the heroine as a child and the hero as an adult, even though, in the film, they are at all times the same age. The film, however, shifts atmospherically from their shared life together as children, adolescents and lovers to their lives as full adults. The hero is having a harder time letting go of that shared time together than she is. As adults of around thirty, they are as apart as they once were together. Her same-race (Japanese American) husband is on trial in their town for murdering a local fisherman.

The hero is bitterly alone and has taken over his late father's newspaper. That he lost his arm fighting in World War II is part of his bitterness. The trial is the weakest part of the film and I could have done with much less of it. The rest of the film is so beautifully brought to the screen that it is annoying when the "typical" trial scenes play. Normally I love Max Van Sydow, the trial lawyer, but I could have even dispensed with him. Gorgeous cinematography enhances this film greatly. Ethan Hawke, who plays the hero, seems to be choosing his roles very carefully. After this film, he went on to star in "Hamlet 2000", where he was spectacular.

Visit my blog with link given on my profile page here or use this phonetically given URL (livingasseniors dot blogspot dot com). Friday's entry will always be weekend entertainment recs from my 5 star Amazon reviews in film, tv, books and music. These are very heavy on buried treasures and hidden gems. My blogspot is published on Monday, Wednesday & Friday.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Hiram Gomez Pardo HALL OF FAME on July 29, 2005
Format: DVD
After the emotional wounds inherited from the WW2, there's a painful fact. A dead man emerges from the sea and rescued by two fishermen. The initial investigation will be the sparkling nerve of this mature story, in which a warmth love story will fade due a crucial decision: imposing wills with racism backstage dictating behavior codes; a sad story about two farmers who will negotiate seven acres of a productive land will converge by those random aggressions in a trial.

The confrontation goes far beyond a simple scheme of guilty or not guilty: the unobstructed passions will rule the scene till ...

Ethan Hawk makes an impressive role, his best achievement to date, with brilliant supporting characters such max Von Sydow as the defense attorney and James Cromwell as the Judge. The rest of the cast is splendid too; the dialogues are polished and concise; there is not excess of any sort.

The travellings in the forest are top notch ( you may realize a slender but visibly warmth homage to Kurosawa's Rashomon ) and the flash backs are simply sumptuous. This brilliant work once more is supported by a Judgment as dramatic device, follows the traces of exceptional previous films such Anatomy of a murder, Judgment at Nuremberg, To kill a mockingbird or Paths of Glory.

This is a genuine artwork. The handle of camera is ravishing as well as the lighting, edition and cinematography

There was an antecedent in a almost forgotten film of the middle fifties: John Sturguess' Bad day at Black Rock , dealing with the Anti Japanese phobia in an isolated town in the map. Spencer Tracy and Robert Ryan were in top form with this picture.

Scott Hicks made an admirable movie
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