two womans playing guitar

Greetings from Fukushima Review

When speaking of historical memory, European cinema continues to reflect the shortcomings of always. The problem lies in his constant attempt to please the general public rather than simply showing selflessly the causes and consequences of the catastrophe in question. And there is nothing more effective than contextualizing from the tragedy to serve on a tray a moral or a message of optimism that fits the expectations of a tolerant and benevolent spectator.


More than 70 years have passed since the atomic bombs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and more than 30 since the Chernobyl accident and few are the films that truthfully and crudely show the terrible consequences of a nuclear disaster. Most filmmakers decline the hard work of rebuilding and reflecting in exchange for the approval and comfort that ensures a place of honor at festivals on duty. Determined to tell their story and to please, they ruin any previous documentation work or any didactic way that the film about the human tragedy can offer.

Almost 7 years have passed since the Fukushima nuclear accident, a disaster that killed 19,000 people and forced half a million citizens to move from their homes. German filmmaker Doris Dorrie ( Cherry Blossoms, The Hairdresser ) shows us the story of two women condemned to understand each other by trauma. Marie (Rosalie Thomas) decides to carry out solidarity work in the most affected region of Fukushima. Integrated into a clowns association ( Clowns4Help) Try to bring some humor and joy to the victims of the nuclear disaster. After seeing that the organization has been reduced to two people and that her work has little influence on the victims, she decides to go back to Germany, thus abandoning any hope of finding the redemption she sought since her arrival. But before leaving, he meets Satomi (Kaori Momoi), a survivor of the disaster, who asks to drive him to his old home (now affected by the nuclear disaster). Satomi is the last geisha of Fukushima, a grumpy old woman who tries to escape from a very painful memory that occurred during the accident. Together they must overcome the past that haunts them, learning from each other to free themselves from prejudice and the pain that traps them.

Manifesting of the cinema

In this binomial of pain, the balance is completely unbalanced, which ends up manifesting a naive and carefree look at the nuclear accident. Marie and Satomi, despite living outside of space and time, in a physical and spiritual desert, find their connection in a completely different pain. Dorrie’s mistake is trying to equate a love loss with the deaths of almost 20,000 people and wanting the audience to leave the room with a hopeful air. Everything is a dream Satomi says, marked by the death of her student, a dream from which Marie wants to wake up, but despite the ghostly appearances of Lynch, neither of them can live within the same nightmare. It is in the intercultural clash between the two whereMemories from Fukushima finds its strong point, in the teachings they share from friction (as in the scene in which Satomi shows her how to drink Japanese-style tea). Disaster as a simple narrative context completely displaces the value of this purge of demons and ghosts, mistakenly substituting silence for the word. A film complet streaming that should convey a feeling of emptiness and that stumbles in its search for forgiveness to give heart to something that should serve as a point of reflection towards the past. Unfortunately, Dorrie has added too much sugar to the tea and the end result feels more than cloying.

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