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Japan Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 14 Critics What's this?

User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 9 Ratings

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  • Summary: Taking its title from the Japanese symbol of the rising sun, Reygadas unapologetically uses widescreen cinema, the most lush of formats, as a backdrop for exploring thorny issues of life and death. (Film Forum)
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 14
  2. Negative: 0 out of 14
  1. 100
    Japón, isn’t just the wildest eruption of the current Mexican film boom, it's the most fascinating new picture I've seen this year.
  2. Some filmmakers give us dreams and false worlds in which we can find refuge. For others, though, like the young Mexican filmmaker Carlos Reygadas, the movies aren't an escape from the world but a way more deeply into it.
  3. The work of a remarkable new talent. By the movie's towering, final tracking shot, this imaginative, dazzling film achieves distinction.
  4. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    This crudely powerful film is a throwback. Unfolding at an elliptical pace that feels like a revelation, or tedium, or both, Japon recalls the glory days of 1970s art-house filmmaking.
  5. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    This strange and beautifully expressive film set in a remote Mexican canyon has nothing whatsoever to do with Japan, but its themes are as universal as they come.
  6. Reygadas is both a sophisticate and a primitive: He sets up his film as a religious allegory, with the nameless painter as a kind of suffering Christ and the old woman--whose name is Ascen, as in Ascension--as his redeemer.
  7. Tough going for most audiences and should be considered more of a rough draft full of lofty ideas unevenly executed.

See all 14 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 5
  3. Negative: 2 out of 5
  1. TJ
    Feb 17, 2006
    This director is brilliant. It is an extremely slow film, but the director's eye is astonishing and he gives you a great sense of being in Mexico. If you like mainstream movies, stay away. If you like Antonioni and other dreamy, existential directors then check it out. Expand

See all 5 User Reviews