Universal Home Entertainment | Release Date: September 12, 2003
7.5
USER SCORE
Generally favorable reviews based on 623 Ratings
USER RATING DISTRIBUTION
Positive:
481
Mixed:
47
Negative:
95
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10
JJan 6, 2007
Beautiful, funny, touching, great acting, great direction, great cinematography, really great soundtrack. One of the best mood pieces ever. The thing people don't understand about this movie is that you don't WATCH it, you FEEL. Beautiful, funny, touching, great acting, great direction, great cinematography, really great soundtrack. One of the best mood pieces ever. The thing people don't understand about this movie is that you don't WATCH it, you FEEL. it. Most movies are like classical music. LiT is like jazz. Most movies must follow rules, LiT doesn't follow any rule. There's no structure and that's a compliment. Like jazz, it's free flowing and to enjoy it you must let yourself go and just enjoy the ride. If you can't do that then you're going to be disappointed. Watch it alone late at nightand it just might change your life, but only if you let it. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful
10
SuzannH.May 5, 2008
For those who have an inner life, this is a great movie.
1 of 3 users found this helpful
10
TaraBMay 3, 2009
Just a simple film told in the most graceful, lyrical way, with subtle, perfectly cast performances but Murray and Johanson.
1 of 2 users found this helpful
10
MarcBJan 4, 2010
Along with Sideways and No Country For Old Men this is one of the three best films of the decade. I love how these two characters connect for a brief moment in time when they are at very different places in their lives. It becomes a bond so Along with Sideways and No Country For Old Men this is one of the three best films of the decade. I love how these two characters connect for a brief moment in time when they are at very different places in their lives. It becomes a bond so intimate, that by the end, even we arent allowed into the privacy of their love(Im thinking of their last scene together). Great film. This film creeps up on you and lingers. All of a sudden this simple story about strangers in Tokyo becomes something more, about the fleeting bonds of unexpected friendship, love and time and chance, and how it can change your life even though it goes so quickly. I love how there is no real time limit on the space they inhabit together. Like, it doesnt go from point a to point b and then end at point c. One minute they are there, amidst the swirling lights of Tokyo, the next moment they are gone. Back to whatever reality is for both of them. Its almost like a dream. All you know is, they connected. If only briefly, they got lost together. Expand
1 of 3 users found this helpful
10
CheriOct 21, 2006
Sublime perfection, truly. If I could give it a 100 I would. I have viewed this more times than I can remember, let's say at least 100. Really. And it holds up to the test of watching watching and rewatching. There are VERY few movies Sublime perfection, truly. If I could give it a 100 I would. I have viewed this more times than I can remember, let's say at least 100. Really. And it holds up to the test of watching watching and rewatching. There are VERY few movies that can do that. Even the sound of it is flawless, sometimes I put it on when I'm working and stressed and need to be soothed. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
MackOct 3, 2006
A work of pure genius.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
RichC.Jan 6, 2006
My favorite movie of 2003.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
OLucJun 4, 2006
One of the best films of recent years. A visual masterpiece in everyway!
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
GS.Mar 2, 2007
Perfectly shot. Excellent on-screen chemistry. Original...need I say more?
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
DanielAMay 24, 2007
Most who are critical of this movie point to its "lack of a plot" and meandering story as serious faults, and therefore claim they hate it. Yet they've become so used to these substandard, 3 act, plot-twist-filled, muddled messes that Most who are critical of this movie point to its "lack of a plot" and meandering story as serious faults, and therefore claim they hate it. Yet they've become so used to these substandard, 3 act, plot-twist-filled, muddled messes that Hollywood churns out every year that they can't see the simple and powerful beauty of Lost in Translation. They're jaded with films, and expect to see actions and consequences, when in fact a lot of LiT is about inaction and restraint: what the two protagonists DON'T say to each other, what they DON'T do together, etc. These people who bash the film may or may not be of sub-standard intelligence; who knows. But it's clear that they cannot appreciate subtle genius and beauty, and that masterpieces like this and La Dolce Vita would go right over their heads. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
apostolosaOct 18, 2009
A movie-trip across your heart! A sound deep into your soul! Yes, we are awake listening to Bob and Charlotte's whispers, taking us far away, above the cityscape of Tokyo! Sofia created a masterpiece! Just for the soul-listeners.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
MatoylaFeb 19, 2009
For anyone that has ever travelled alone. For anyone that has ever stood on that precipe and wondered "what would have happened...?" And could Bill Murray singing karaoke to Scarlett be one of the most sad and profound romantic scenes ever For anyone that has ever travelled alone. For anyone that has ever stood on that precipe and wondered "what would have happened...?" And could Bill Murray singing karaoke to Scarlett be one of the most sad and profound romantic scenes ever shown.One of my top 10 films. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
JasonA.Oct 23, 2005
Brilliant -- starting with the script and working right through the casting, acting, directing, cinematography, and soundtrack. This is a rare perfect movie. Those who find it boring wouldn't appreciate a great film if it hit them Brilliant -- starting with the script and working right through the casting, acting, directing, cinematography, and soundtrack. This is a rare perfect movie. Those who find it boring wouldn't appreciate a great film if it hit them square in the eyes. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
RussS.Dec 8, 2006
I believe what this movie is trying to depict can hold true in any culture and is brilliantly portrayed amidst hilariously witty and simple humor. This movie is damn near flawlessly written and directed. It
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
LouisO.Feb 17, 2006
A masterpiece. Every element; music, editing, cinemaphotography, acting, is flawless. Not everyone will respond to Ms. Coppola's vision. Consider yourself blessed if you do.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
JeffM.Mar 31, 2006
My favorite film. This is a movie about those relationships we find important, that change our lives, but in the end go "no where" as our society defines them. In a foreign society with no one to judge, these things can and do happen.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
VillyD.May 14, 2006
A Real movie. With excellent music.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
ThorneM.Jul 25, 2006
Give it some time, but in a few years, we'll look back on this movie and regard it as one of the finest pieces of art that American cinema has ever produced. The acting is flawless, the writing is hilarious but heartfelt, and the Give it some time, but in a few years, we'll look back on this movie and regard it as one of the finest pieces of art that American cinema has ever produced. The acting is flawless, the writing is hilarious but heartfelt, and the cinematography is simply gorgeous. It is a travesty that Bill Murray did not win the oscar for his role. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
JakeJul 29, 2006
This is a FILM. Not a movie. American Pie lovers might possible DIE if they attempt to watch this. But if you like films such as Badlands, Annie Hall, Taxi Driver, The Thin Red Line, ect., you'll love this.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
KaylaF.Nov 2, 2007
Probably my all time favorite movie. Its so human, its fantastic. This movie deserves nothing less than 10/10
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
BrianZ.May 16, 2007
You have to see the end of the movie to understand its meaning and to receive its full impact.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
MikeHMay 27, 2008
Not to sound pretentious, but the people who don't understand the film are the ones to give it low scores. The only thing that the movie has going against it may be it's inaccessibility. It's funny, artistic, sensitive, Not to sound pretentious, but the people who don't understand the film are the ones to give it low scores. The only thing that the movie has going against it may be it's inaccessibility. It's funny, artistic, sensitive, endearing, subtle, and powerful. It's film at it's best, and if you like pop-garbage movies than I'm sorry, you won't like this. It's not "action-packed!" or "sexy, kinky, shit" it's genuine and calm. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful
10
MichaelH.Aug 19, 2009
Pure perfection. Moving and touching everytime. The ending brings tears every watch.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
KieranJAug 7, 2009
A lot of these reviews give this movie a 1 or a zero, usually citing reasons such as ' it was actionless' ' boring' ' where was the plot? i didn't get a climax, something which I've been socially A lot of these reviews give this movie a 1 or a zero, usually citing reasons such as ' it was actionless' ' boring' ' where was the plot? i didn't get a climax, something which I've been socially conditioned to look forward to!' This movie is subtle, maybe it lacks action, but not everything's about action. The exploration into ideas about isolation and loneliness and poignant romance shared between the two characters is something special. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
WilbertV.Dec 13, 2005
This is truthfully one of the most beautiful movies I have ever seen.
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
StumpadoodleJ.Dec 26, 2006
This is either a film you love, or hate. I will not defend it by forcing deeper meaning theories or artistic criticism on it, but what I will say is that it had human emotion down pat. Completely brilliant as a love story, if nothing else. A This is either a film you love, or hate. I will not defend it by forcing deeper meaning theories or artistic criticism on it, but what I will say is that it had human emotion down pat. Completely brilliant as a love story, if nothing else. A must see. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
AlecK.Feb 13, 2006
Best movie I've seen in a long time! I was in Japan several times, and watching the movie could almost smell that illusive unique feeling, one could get, walking the streets of Harajuku and Shibuya, or just strolling the back allays in Best movie I've seen in a long time! I was in Japan several times, and watching the movie could almost smell that illusive unique feeling, one could get, walking the streets of Harajuku and Shibuya, or just strolling the back allays in Tokyo, or riding the subway. It's in the air, it's in the belly, it's in that movie. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
MojoP.Dec 28, 2007
Simply put this is an incredible film of pitch perfect dialogue and some great shots of Japan. It captures humanity in the two lead characters with stellar precision and truth. I can see how regular movie goers may get bored, this movie is Simply put this is an incredible film of pitch perfect dialogue and some great shots of Japan. It captures humanity in the two lead characters with stellar precision and truth. I can see how regular movie goers may get bored, this movie is one to really focus on with each line spoken having meaning for plot advancement. Simply put, the writing and acting is brilliant, sheer ace. I loved it anyway. Music was ace too. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
BarryApr 26, 2007
I know it's a love hate film but I'm firmly on the love side. I could watch this film every week but I'd be afraid I'd wear out my fondness for it. I doubt it though. I actually feel as if I'm in Tokyo for an hour I know it's a love hate film but I'm firmly on the love side. I could watch this film every week but I'd be afraid I'd wear out my fondness for it. I doubt it though. I actually feel as if I'm in Tokyo for an hour and a half when i watch it. I love the way it doesn't go for the Hollywood ending and I love the whisper and i love that people hate they don't know what's being said. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
DDec 29, 2009
One of the greatest films ever made and probably the greatest by an American director. If S. Coppola continues to make films anywhere close to the standard of this masterpiece she could be considered alongside the masters of modern cinema One of the greatest films ever made and probably the greatest by an American director. If S. Coppola continues to make films anywhere close to the standard of this masterpiece she could be considered alongside the masters of modern cinema such as Rohmer and Antonioni. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
J.C.VJul 23, 2009
I think that the message this film give us is very important. There's some comments under mine that says this movie is boring, without climax, drama or something else, but that's the typical kind of comment that an average person I think that the message this film give us is very important. There's some comments under mine that says this movie is boring, without climax, drama or something else, but that's the typical kind of comment that an average person would say. The movie is not so direct as "Requiem for a dream" (for example) is, may be kinda slow for some people but I think that the main topics are wonderfully expressed. [I'm sorry because my english is not so good but that's what I have to say. I loved that movie, and I think is one of the best I've ever seen...]. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
NinjaMafiaDec 19, 2003
This movie is by far one the best this year. Definitely deserves best Drama. Hell, maybe even best picture. The thing is is that it portrays everything so realistically that you can relate to it. And now to comment on V.D.'s review. This movie is by far one the best this year. Definitely deserves best Drama. Hell, maybe even best picture. The thing is is that it portrays everything so realistically that you can relate to it. And now to comment on V.D.'s review. Boring? Yes I once heard that the average American Attention span was about 7 seconds. Thats the thing, if you don't have explosions every 3 seconds, you lose the crowd. That is the way it is with a lot of movies. Hell, I recently jusst watched the Leonardo Dicaprio version of Romeo and Juliet in school and tons of people found the ending extremely boring. My question is, WHY DON"T YOU PEOPLE STOP SEEING MOVIES theN? If you can't enjoy a good movie, then don't see movies. I would be find if it were their opinion and had a bit more to say than just boring. Like, why it was boring. (Note: yes this is a bit late but I'm not calling Romeo and Juliet a good or bad movie, that is for another review so just lay off). Overall, Lost in Translation may be the best movie all year. You would do yourself injustice not to at least give this a try. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful
10
JohnB.Dec 22, 2008
Actually, Brandon, you missed a lot. This is a wonderful movie. It's a simple, slow-moving character study of two people in a foreign land who have little more waiting for them at their homes. They are lost and find one another. Actually, Brandon, you missed a lot. This is a wonderful movie. It's a simple, slow-moving character study of two people in a foreign land who have little more waiting for them at their homes. They are lost and find one another. It's not plot-oriented in the cliched sense (hence, the numerous low scores, many, though not all, from people like Ed F. who need plots or action spoonfed to them). I agree with Alex, it's not mindless entertainment, but a soulful, beautiful film that touches on much deeper feelings than most films. Believe me, as someone who loves all movies, from silly comedies and action thrillers, to the most obscure highbrow art flicks, this is a fantastic movie. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful
10
elisabethhDec 27, 2009
Lost in Translation is such a deeply memorable and idiosyncratic movie. I've watched it (and marveled at its amazing portrait of dislocation and connection) many times.
0 of 1 users found this helpful
10
opticAug 21, 2010
The best movie ever made. Period. Sublime in every delicious aspect.

If you don't 'get it', don't worry, its the same reason that you 'don't get' abstract algebra or number theory. Its complex and you're not.
1 of 3 users found this helpful12
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10
ryancarroll88Aug 27, 2010
If "Titanic" was the iconic bloated romance novel of movies, then "Lost in Translation" is the quiet, poignant poem that is all the more affecting because of that.
22 of 26 users found this helpful224
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10
jAbMaNFeb 14, 2011
Lost In Translation is a great romantic beautiful that I ever seen recently. The storyline is great and Bill and Scarlett are great actors. It doesn't matter how old they are, the chemistry just works and they do belong together in the end.
1 of 1 users found this helpful10
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10
jocerealMar 14, 2012
Frail, dreamy, beautiful, with the most gorgeous Scarlett yet to be displayed on screen. Leaves you shaking with hyped sensitivity. Too bad so many people associate Bill Murray with goofyness; this was a piece of humanity, shy with desire toFrail, dreamy, beautiful, with the most gorgeous Scarlett yet to be displayed on screen. Leaves you shaking with hyped sensitivity. Too bad so many people associate Bill Murray with goofyness; this was a piece of humanity, shy with desire to experience closure. Unfortunately, beauty, like many other things these days, needs to be exagerated for people to get it. Expand
4 of 4 users found this helpful40
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10
J-ShapAug 25, 2011
There is something to be said about the kind of quiet elegance that Lost In Translation slowly sweats out over the course of 102 minutes. Most art films claim to be visual poetry. If that is true, the films of Sofia Coppola are visual songs,There is something to be said about the kind of quiet elegance that Lost In Translation slowly sweats out over the course of 102 minutes. Most art films claim to be visual poetry. If that is true, the films of Sofia Coppola are visual songs, with quiet, melancholy guitar strings, and fuzzy, indistinct feedback. Expand
2 of 2 users found this helpful20
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10
RebeccaTYAug 17, 2011
A thoughtful film with subtle humour, beautiful cinematography and relaxed pace that allows you to be engulfed into the alienation to two seem to suffer and the solace they find each other in this new city. The soundtrack fits the scenesA thoughtful film with subtle humour, beautiful cinematography and relaxed pace that allows you to be engulfed into the alienation to two seem to suffer and the solace they find each other in this new city. The soundtrack fits the scenes brilliantly too. I love this film. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
LITIGreatOct 14, 2011
An amazing Movie. I fell in love with Charlotte then, but scarlette Johansen has never appeal to me since . I've read on blogs and site about how impressed they were with scarlette maturaty for only being 18 at the time. i disagree i feltAn amazing Movie. I fell in love with Charlotte then, but scarlette Johansen has never appeal to me since . I've read on blogs and site about how impressed they were with scarlette maturaty for only being 18 at the time. i disagree i felt That she brought a sense innocense to the character that made the semi plutonic relationship with an older bill murry more understadnle/relatable. The apparant plot is thin. that is to say not much realy happens. But too looks at this movie from perspective of action movie is too miss the point enterly. This movie needed its quite movemnts to reveal the subtle intimate moments between its characters. and to give the viewer an impression of isolation and unease. What one would experience if they felt traped in a foreign country. and serves to give its viewer that yearning for compionship with whomever they could relate to. And it just so happens that that person is kinda person is as beatuiful as charlotte or cool as bil. which is awsome ln my opion . i want to add more but im a lazy writer. this movie i absoulutley love, it came into my life at the right time. this is one of the few movie that i can without a doubt give it a perfect rating. in short you have up and your downs but mainly you have your inbetweens and its only when you can find someone to care for that it makes it worth while. pleas do yourself a favor go in without expection and try to watch with it patient movie goers. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
StevenFJul 20, 2013
Lost in Translation can be interpreted in various different ways, especially with this chosen title. The film at times is like seeing some beautiful poetry on screen, it weaves between growth, despair but also companionship, especially sinceLost in Translation can be interpreted in various different ways, especially with this chosen title. The film at times is like seeing some beautiful poetry on screen, it weaves between growth, despair but also companionship, especially since writer/director Sofia Coppola immediately challenges and also lures the audience into sympathy for our unlikely friends.
Bill Murray electrifies the screen as bored and seasoned American actor Bob Harris, who we meet in Tokyo filming a whiskey commercial, his sense of delusion and loneliness is immediate as we find his face often expressionless and his nights are spent sitting at his hotel bar, where he meets Charlotte, a young American graduate who shares the same mindset of loneliness and culture shock as Bob, two unlikely pals who are in a strange new world, a strange new way of life.
The two exchange various anecdotes about how they ended up in Tokyo, a place so alive and vibrant, but they feel disconnected and isolated. We learn of Charlotte living with her photographer husband, who she believes isn't spending enough time with her, thus her alienation of the city she currently resides. Bob also has relationship issues that continue to prey on his mind the longer time he spends by himself but also the older he becomes.
The budding friendship and agreement of their awkwardness in the city helps them develop their love for the place, and Sofia Coppola perfectly captures a place and whole different way of life worth falling for. She has written a beautiful script that at many moments is not heavy on dialogue, but relies on the veteran talents of Murray but also the charm and freshness of Johansson. These two stars truly command the screen, and set up the situations that the title possibly refers to, their encounters with friends, media personalities and even closer people, but they can remain lost in their own mind, through withdrawal or homesickness, one can speculate.
A poetic, beautiful, hard-hitting but clever film that explores the decency of the common man, while also dealing with situations that will arise out of a comfort zone, and how the person may react to such a change, but with the acting prowess at full steam in the film, its hard not to admire the overall work and effort, with clear affection and mastery put in throughout.
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0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
wesker2012Jun 1, 2012
A classic and rare movie that shows the feelings of loneliness, isolation, and not feeling connected to the environment around you. And finding someone in the same boat can be remarkably powerful.
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
pkgadersonsJul 3, 2012
Great movie .
0 of 3 users found this helpful03
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10
HSPLazerzJan 30, 2015
The most subtle and emotional film I've seen, indeed the best there is. If you're looking for some true emotions and a true experience unlike anything else, you've come to the right spot. People who gave this bad reviews obviously require aThe most subtle and emotional film I've seen, indeed the best there is. If you're looking for some true emotions and a true experience unlike anything else, you've come to the right spot. People who gave this bad reviews obviously require a revolution, death counts over 9000, and some stupid **** "earth is gonz dye nd ve ndd tu gu torwds marz!" to even notice a slight bit of emotion. But if you're mature, and you can understand emotions and people in general, yes, you will love this. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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10
DahopaApr 26, 2013
Honestly, if there was one movie that I could take to a desert island, I think this might be it (assuming Godfather counted as a trilogy). Thoughtful, real and splendidly written, directed and acted.
0 of 1 users found this helpful01
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10
epiclucaAug 21, 2014
This masterpiece of a movie is so aesthetically pleasing, from the soundtrack to the alien atmosphere of Tokyo that is perfectly conveyed by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. Whilst the movie does have it's comedic points where things getThis masterpiece of a movie is so aesthetically pleasing, from the soundtrack to the alien atmosphere of Tokyo that is perfectly conveyed by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. Whilst the movie does have it's comedic points where things get literally Lost In Translation, I find this to be more of a rom-com minus the romance and comedy. Romantic intentions are implied but there seems to be a mutual respect between the characters that is so perfectly crafted by Sofia Coppola. The small amount of the time through the film that the characters have to develop is used wisely, both come out of the story having learnt valuable life lessons about themselves which ultimately are passed onto the audience. Expand
0 of 0 users found this helpful00
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10
NShep53Jun 3, 2015
Bill Murray shows his great acting range in a personal favorite of mine. Lost in Translation is a beautiful film. Tokyo is a gorgeous city that really shines throughout the movie. Scarlett Johansson (in an early role) shows just how amazingBill Murray shows his great acting range in a personal favorite of mine. Lost in Translation is a beautiful film. Tokyo is a gorgeous city that really shines throughout the movie. Scarlett Johansson (in an early role) shows just how amazing of an actress she is (and just why she became a star). If you want a true, deep love story or just watch a great piece of cinema, you can never go wrong with Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation. Expand
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10
TrevorDevendorfAug 17, 2014
First of all Sofia Coppola (The Virgin Suicides) the daughter of Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather). No expectations what so ever, Sofia is one amazing director, this movie was wonderful and a delight. I like the aspect that that twoFirst of all Sofia Coppola (The Virgin Suicides) the daughter of Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather). No expectations what so ever, Sofia is one amazing director, this movie was wonderful and a delight. I like the aspect that that two American strangers meet in Japan, with Bill Murray as Bob and Scar Jo as Charlotte. Brilliant casting, also with another favourite actor of mine Giovanni Ribisi. Has a few really funny parts, the film had my attention the whole time! Very entertaining for all kinds of movie-goers! Expand
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10
ParsaSadriMar 5, 2015
Filled by excellent performances by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, great writing, great directing, loveable characters, realistic dialogue and the total opposite of your typical Hollywood movie clichés. This movie highly deserves to beFilled by excellent performances by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, great writing, great directing, loveable characters, realistic dialogue and the total opposite of your typical Hollywood movie clichés. This movie highly deserves to be in my top 15 movies of all-time. Expand
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10
PfilipMar 16, 2015
This is a perfect film. Oh, it will not suit everyone's taste--the hopelessly jaded or fatally hip may sneer and snore--but make no mistake, this is cinematic lightning in a bottle. Those two actors, that screenplay, that director, thatThis is a perfect film. Oh, it will not suit everyone's taste--the hopelessly jaded or fatally hip may sneer and snore--but make no mistake, this is cinematic lightning in a bottle. Those two actors, that screenplay, that director, that music, and that city in that year... everything interweaves exquisitely, not a single element could stand to be changed.

It is the quietest moments that enrapture you, the 4:00 a.m. sleeplessness where everyone is slightly dazed and raw, the walls are down, and the soul is simply too tired to put on a false face... it is these two lost, imperfect human beings who have more in common than they have any right to, and the bond that forms as they take inspiration from each other. This is not a romance of any kind. But it is perhaps the most intimate relationship you will ever see on screen.

Turn off your cell phone, turn off the lights, turn up your sound system, and be unguarded long enough to know the loneliness--and its antidote. Forget whatever you know about these actors today and just get to know Bob and Charlotte. Over a decade on, I am still unabashedly in love with them, and with this entire film.
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10
MovieMasterEddyApr 3, 2016
An American in Japan, Making a Connection.

The director Sofia Coppola's new comic melodrama, "Lost in Translation," thoroughly and touchingly connects the dots between three standards of yearning in movies: David Lean's "Brief Encounter,"
An American in Japan, Making a Connection.

The director Sofia Coppola's new comic melodrama, "Lost in Translation," thoroughly and touchingly connects the dots between three standards of yearning in movies: David Lean's "Brief Encounter," Richard Linklater's "Before Sunrise" and Wong Kar-wai's "In the Mood for Love." All three movies are, in their way, about a moment of evanescence that fades before the participants' eyes — as is "Translation." ("Translation" also exhibits the self-contained, stylized lonesomeness found in post-punk, like New Order's "Bizarre Love Triangle.")

Ms. Coppola's movie also happens to be hilarious — a paean to dislocated people discovering how alive they are when they can barely keep their eyes open. The sexiness comes from the busy, desperate need-to-impress heat of a flirtation, an unrequited love communicated through a filter of sleep deprivation.

"Translation," which opens today in New York and Los Angeles, is also one of the purest and simplest examples ever of a director falling in love with her star's gifts. And never has a director found a figure more deserving of her admiration than Bill Murray. He plays a vodka-and-bitters version of himself and the persona that made him famous. His character, Bob, is an American movie star who is in Tokyo to participate in the celebrity not-so-secret shame: he's picking up a boatload of dough to perform in commercials for Suntory whiskey. He arrives in Japan just in time to gaze, slightly embarrassed, at the sullen billboards of himself that are starting to appear there. While blinking sleeplessly around the lobby of the majestically hermetic Tokyo Hyatt, he meets Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson), who has been abandoned by her photographer husband (Giovanni Ribisi); he's off shooting a band.

The movie follows the twists and connections in Bob and Charlotte's relationship — like some trans-Atlantic phone calls, their feelings reach each other on a five-second delay. The lag time only embellishes the comedy, and the heartbreak.

It's the first grown-up starring part that Mr. Murray has had, and he inflects every facet of public awareness of Bill Murray with a sure, beveled determination. That may be because he has never really had a leading role that has asked him simply to pay attention to the other actors instead of guide the scene or save it.

Lean and physically witty — because he has dropped the awareness of the audience's demand for mainstream comedy — he even seems to be standing taller, perched on Bob's courtliness. Generally, Mr. Murray has given performances worth paying attention to in movies that no one sees, like his physical inhabitation of Hunter S. Thompson in "Where the Buffalo Roam," perhaps the only film example extant of Mr. Murray's ability to depict vulnerability and physical threat simultaneously.

Here he supplies the kind of performance that seems so fully realized and effortless that it can easily be mistaken for not acting at all. The corollary of this is that Ms. Coppola's direction is so breezily assured in its awareness of loneliness that the film could potentially be dismissed as self-consciously moody rather than registering as a mood piece. But it's bound to be recognized as a movie worthy of the kind of Oscar attention occasionally given to films that challenge audiences subtly. Mr. Murray could collect the Academy Award that he didn't get for "Rushmore."

Here, his capacity for absorbing everything around him has taken a toll, and the visibility of that burden is what "Translation" is all about. The psychodrama in the phone calls from Bob's wife adds a chilling layer of passive-aggressive horror that makes you understand why he had to flee to Tokyo. But thanks to Ms. Coppola's gracefulness, those conversations don't overwhelm the movie; instead, they add texture.

Music is a big part of the director's life; Ms. Coppola's previous feature, a screen adaptation of "The Virgin Suicides," was informed more substantially by the score by the group Air than by the narrative. She also allows Bob a chance to croon some karaoke, including a cover of Roxy Music's "More Than This."

The movie conveys dislocation and the hungers it causes more than just visually. Perhaps because of that, "Translation" exists more as a film rendering psychological colorations than as a script.

But as a result of Ms. Coppola's faith, this is really Mr. Murray's movie, and his respect for his director couldn't be more visible.

In the handful of films she has done — including her short, "Lick the Star" — Ms. Coppola has shown an interest in emotional way stations. Her characters are caught between past and future — lost in transition. Perhaps her films are a kind of ongoing metaphorical autobiography, but no matter. The important point is that there's a lot up there on the screen, plenty to get lost in.
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10
Antgiog1202May 16, 2016
We've seen romance between people in their springtime of life or in their advanced years; but have we ever seen one side criss-cross each other to bring us an outlier of an age difference? "Lost in Translation" provides us with theWe've seen romance between people in their springtime of life or in their advanced years; but have we ever seen one side criss-cross each other to bring us an outlier of an age difference? "Lost in Translation" provides us with the heartwarming information that age does not matter in the context of love. When your lost in a contrasting environment, not only by the foreign atmosphere; by the internal conflict you are dealing with, there's no other option but to find that solemate that you can relate to and provide comfort with.

This film is a complete masterpiece and probably one of greatest cinematic achievements of all time!

Rating: 10/10

A+ = 10
A = 9
A- = 8
B+ = 7
B = 6
B- = 5
C+ = 4
C = 3
C- = 2.5
D+ = 2
D = 1.5
D- = 1
F = 0
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10
TheGreatDustyCZAug 3, 2016
Absolutely great movie with amazing actors, well written screenplay and awesomely picked soundtrack. One of the BEST movies ever made. Bill Murray should have won an Oscar. 100%
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9
DestanyL.Oct 15, 2006
One of my favorite movies. Bill Murray is incredibly, one of his best performances yet.
1 of 3 users found this helpful
9
AlexJul 9, 2008
A thinking person's movie, with powerful performances by the lead actors....clearly not everyone's cup of tea but the movie is actually a mirror of real life with all of its sadness and poignancy.
1 of 3 users found this helpful
9
JamesA.Jan 15, 2007
So quietly captivating; beautiful.
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9
NormanC.Mar 27, 2004
I found the chemistry between Bill Murray and Scarlett Johanson enchanting. The idea, expressed by some that there they could not invest in the characters I think expresses more the limitation of those reviewers than the film.
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9
MarkI.Jun 24, 2007
Simply beautiful. This film warms the soul.
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9
MarcJ.Mar 9, 2009
This is a great movie. It moved into my top 20 list a long time ago. Many films follow a very traditional structure. You know- a fully structured plot, a clear climax, and a "feel good" resolution at the end. These films generally treat you This is a great movie. It moved into my top 20 list a long time ago. Many films follow a very traditional structure. You know- a fully structured plot, a clear climax, and a "feel good" resolution at the end. These films generally treat you as a passenger, explicitly making it clear when these points in the story are happening (perhaps by showing a big explosion or a car chase). It's a great formula for entertainment, and there is a place for these movies. But Lost in Translation is not one of these movies. It leaves some room for the viewer to interpret events, the nature of relationships, and so on. It's not that people that don't like it aren't smart enough to understand it- it's just that they're likely approaching the movie the wrong way. Expand
0 of 1 users found this helpful
9
EdT.Jan 31, 2006
The vastly polarized responses this movie has managed to elicit are really quite amazing. Despite all the positive reviews, people in the general public have either loved it or hated it. I, for one, loved this movie... and I believe there is The vastly polarized responses this movie has managed to elicit are really quite amazing. Despite all the positive reviews, people in the general public have either loved it or hated it. I, for one, loved this movie... and I believe there is a very simple explanation for why I fall into this catagory: I watched LIT in the theaters before all of the hype. I'd say 90% of the people who watched it under those circumstances (and with an open mind) enjoyed the movie. On the other hand, I would guess that 90% of the people who hate this movie only watched it (probably on DVD) after hearing the hype and falling for the misleading commercials that tried to pass this rather subtle movie off as "hilarious" and "a laugh riot." Don't let the idiots in Universal's marketing department ruin this experience for you. LIT is a great movie for the intelligent movie fan. The rest of you should just go back to watching "Alien vs. Predator." Expand
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9
RobMay 17, 2006
I have done a lot of travel over the last few years, very rarely stayed in big hotels, or partied in cool nightclubs. But Sofia truely captures the essence of cross cultural travel. The hum of hotel corridors, the comforting buzz of unknown I have done a lot of travel over the last few years, very rarely stayed in big hotels, or partied in cool nightclubs. But Sofia truely captures the essence of cross cultural travel. The hum of hotel corridors, the comforting buzz of unknown tounges, the multitude of possabilityin every interaction. Even the soundtack is sublime, but probably means a lot more to people of a certain age, shoegazer rock made life bearable in my teens. Just as watching this film calms my travel bug and makes home life bearable in my thirties. Expand
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9
JoseS.Aug 24, 2008
So, it's a little slow - still, Bill Murray has never been better, and Scarlett Johansson is wonderfully understated. also the best Sophia Coppola has ever done, doubt she'll top this. A comedy with a big heart.
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9
OscarPicks2010Jan 8, 2011
Sofia Cappola is one of Hollywood's directors that can make silent pauses and no dialogue in between movies so irresistably watchable. Her takes in writing and directing movies within movies isn't new, but there's something new in this, maybeSofia Cappola is one of Hollywood's directors that can make silent pauses and no dialogue in between movies so irresistably watchable. Her takes in writing and directing movies within movies isn't new, but there's something new in this, maybe it is in a foreign setting. Movie star Bob Harris (Bill Murray) is going through a mid-life crisis. He went to Tokyo, Japan to promote a liquor drink that was going nowhere. Staying at a hotel and drinking at the bar downstairs everyday, he started seeing a newlywed who's also having a complication in her relationship, Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson). Perhaps the movie's main element isn't the top-notch award-winning script that shaped the movie in every way, or the stylish directing from Sofia Cappola, perhaps it's the unbelievable chemistry between Johansson and Murray (nominated for an Oscar). Lost In Translation really changed Hollywood's perspectives in some ways and Bill Murray/Scarlet Johansson is the best on-screen couple I've seen in years. Expand
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9
Potter17Dec 28, 2011
Dealing with complex feelings like boredom, sadness and frustration by writing and directing the film herself, Sofia Coppola shows such elegance and creativity and makes "Lost in Translation" an almost impeccable film.
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9
MontezDec 14, 2012
There are many things "lost in translation" during the film ranging from language to hand gestures in this sleek, moody yet humorous modern classic. With fantastic performances from Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, Lost in Translation is aThere are many things "lost in translation" during the film ranging from language to hand gestures in this sleek, moody yet humorous modern classic. With fantastic performances from Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, Lost in Translation is a melancholic piece of cinema from Sofia Coppola, who in the end reminds us bound-to-be lone-wanders that that the only thing universally understood is true love. Translations may vary, but the message is always understood. Expand
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9
ydnar4May 23, 2015
Lost in Translation is one of the most engaging films I have ever seen and I think this film will only gain more recognition as it ages and I will likely appreciate the film more as I age. I think this is the type of film that you take moreLost in Translation is one of the most engaging films I have ever seen and I think this film will only gain more recognition as it ages and I will likely appreciate the film more as I age. I think this is the type of film that you take more from each time you watch it. Bill Murray, there are just no words to describe the performance he gave in this movie. I think he was truly perfect, and it is one of the best portrayals I have ever seen and although I liked Mystic River as well I think Murray's performance beats out Sean Penn's for the 2004 Academy Award. There is also an amazing performance by Scarlett Johansson who was only 18 years old when this film was released, this role displays a mature woman far beyond her years and it would be nice to see a performance like this in the future. Warning for people who hate slow movies! This is a slow film but if you like to watch movies that change your outlook on life and opens you mind then there may be no better film than Lost in Translation. Expand
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9
JDC4May 18, 2015
I have watched this movie many, many times. I never get tired of it as each time I see something different. As others have written here the two main(and almost only) characters find themselves in Tokyo alone looking for some way to pass theI have watched this movie many, many times. I never get tired of it as each time I see something different. As others have written here the two main(and almost only) characters find themselves in Tokyo alone looking for some way to pass the time. Each finding new faults in their partners or relationships which they seem unable to rectify. Hence the liaison between the two. It seems to me like they are both on vacation with the end of the movie coinciding with the end of the "vacation". A dreamworld. But the unanswered question I have is why Bill Murray's character returns to the USA. We are left having to arrive at our own conclusions-responsibility, obligation, commitment. I was cheering for him to stay on. Fulfilling the unfulfilled dreams of many of us. Looking for a more satisfying life, a more enjoyable life which is crowded out by our many obligations. Here is a guy who has no money problems, has no career problems but has his "ball and chain" back in the USA. The sad part for me is that I can relate to his dilemma, relate to his choice to go or stay and saddened by his choice to return home. Bill Murray is fantastic in this role, hats off to him for having broken the "Bill Murray" mold. Expand
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9
CineAutoctonoJul 31, 2017
"Lost in Traslation" was a very good movie, I loved the photography, and all the places, the culture, and the people of Japan, I liked the perfomances of Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, and i Liked the story, and the story is very good,"Lost in Traslation" was a very good movie, I loved the photography, and all the places, the culture, and the people of Japan, I liked the perfomances of Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson, and i Liked the story, and the story is very good, I´ve enjoy this moviee, This movie is magic. Expand
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9
WhatdoyouthinkApr 20, 2016
I enjoyed this movie because it captures the joy of chance meeting of two people and of making a real personal connection. It is like going on a weekend retreat where you had deep conversations with someone you never would meet otherwise. II enjoyed this movie because it captures the joy of chance meeting of two people and of making a real personal connection. It is like going on a weekend retreat where you had deep conversations with someone you never would meet otherwise. I did not read even the movie description before seeing it but knew Bill Murry and Scarlett Johansson somehow are strangers that become friends or something, so I had no clue what it was about. I thought Scarlett may even be a kid in it, but she is a young woman in the movie. I could not get enough of the quirkiness of the characters, their conversations, and the situations they find in a new foreign place, Kyoto Japan. The movie is sometimes funny, yet also sometimes turns to serious yearning, and the combination is believable. If you want a normal romantic comedy then you may not want this, as it is more off beat and harder to label. The main actors and background characters do such a great job of giving the movie a feeling of not acting, more like they are just living a documentary. The side characters did great to make it feel real. I do wonder if anyone has an issue with the cultural portrayal of Japanese because they focus more on unusual characters but it is probably like viewing Las Vegas as a portrayal of American culture. The movie stays with you and is memorable, and I enjoyed watching where it went and did not want it to end. At times we can only be ourselves when with strangers. Expand
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9
EpicLadySpongeMay 3, 2016
Genius thinking is from the main star who plays a character that suffers from insomnia and the director who brings everything look so true from the cover.
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8
ChadD.Apr 6, 2007
It took me a 2-3 views to really appreciate all this movie has to offer. There is so much that is unspoken and even unseen. If quiet, visceral films are not your thing; if you prefer stories that are more linear and "eventful," you should It took me a 2-3 views to really appreciate all this movie has to offer. There is so much that is unspoken and even unseen. If quiet, visceral films are not your thing; if you prefer stories that are more linear and "eventful," you should probably skip this one. It requires a little patience and for you to allow some personal investment, but will reward you for allowing it to seep in. Expand
1 of 1 users found this helpful
8
RickT.Nov 23, 2005
After the first viewing, I thought it was racist, offensive and Bill Murray's performance was disgustingly arrogant. Scarlett Johanson is the director's alter ego, who may have felt alienated during her stay in Japan. After all, After the first viewing, I thought it was racist, offensive and Bill Murray's performance was disgustingly arrogant. Scarlett Johanson is the director's alter ego, who may have felt alienated during her stay in Japan. After all, Sophia Coppola was probably a spoiled American brat with a huge ego. I really enjoyed this movie, it was very well designed, well filmed and the on-location sceneries were gorgeous and fascinating. Bill Murray destroyed all that. He was downright rude and thoughtless. And Scarlett has this innocent angel in a strange world attitude that is very annoying. Typical White American better-than-thou-over-other-inferior-race mentality. However, after the second viewing, it suddenly changed. We see Bill Murray as a typical unhappy American, unfaithful to his wife. We see his wife (through the fax machine) as a typical materialistic housewife. We see some Americans at the hotel as being very shallow and dumb. It seems like Sophia Coppola was in fact poking fun at both races. These two protagonists, however, were beginning to discover themselves while they have become alienated with Japan, their own lives as well as their very own people. Also, when Sophia Coppola received her Oscar at the ceremony, she cited Wong Kar Wai as one of her inspirations. All is forgiven! This is a good movie. It is one of those movies that are easily misunderstood (remember Natural Born Killers?). Expand
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8
TubieNov 2, 2010
Another great movie with Bill Murray in it. I've always loved Japan and many things that come out of that country so the setting of this movie was a real treat for me, with a beautiful plot and a great cast. All of these things make thisAnother great movie with Bill Murray in it. I've always loved Japan and many things that come out of that country so the setting of this movie was a real treat for me, with a beautiful plot and a great cast. All of these things make this movie one of my favorites. Expand
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8
beingryanjudeSep 1, 2014
The magnum opus of Miss Sofia Coppola. She proves with Lost in Translation that she is more than capable of upholding her family's name in the filmmaking industry.
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8
Trev29Jun 9, 2013
Bill Murray is pitch perfect in this role. It seems as if this character was carved out specifically for him. When this movie is funny, it is unbelievably hilarious. This really is a realistic picture of lost people who come together to formBill Murray is pitch perfect in this role. It seems as if this character was carved out specifically for him. When this movie is funny, it is unbelievably hilarious. This really is a realistic picture of lost people who come together to form a heartwarming friendship. Expand
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8
aadityamudharApr 18, 2016
If "Titanic" was the iconic bloated romance novel of movies, then "Lost in Translation" is the quiet, poignant poem that is all the more affecting because of that.
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7
JacobMay 30, 2015
Lost in Translation takes life and presents it in a way that creates a real, believable, and immersive setting. Bob and Charlotte are characters that can be connected with and identified without the film explicitly saying what they areLost in Translation takes life and presents it in a way that creates a real, believable, and immersive setting. Bob and Charlotte are characters that can be connected with and identified without the film explicitly saying what they are feeling through cinematography, sound, and natural dialogue. All this creates an engaging film that speaks to its audience and is worth a watch. Expand
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7
AwesomeReviewerFeb 24, 2013
“Lost In Translation” is a fine movie. The writing is pretty good and the film has a lot to say. There is a lot of underlying themes and dialogue that make you think and reevaluate your own life. However, the film falls short because of its“Lost In Translation” is a fine movie. The writing is pretty good and the film has a lot to say. There is a lot of underlying themes and dialogue that make you think and reevaluate your own life. However, the film falls short because of its execution. There are scenes and moments that are just beautiful and thought provoking, but we have to sit through a lot of dare I say it boring moments just to get to one of these “good parts.” The cinematography is elegant, but the urge to be artistic detracts from the sweet story that is being told. On the other hand when we do get these so called “good parts” they are well worth it and make us realize why we’re sitting through this movie.

Characters and acting are good. The characters are deeply layered and enhance the film. They’re characters that we want to know more about and wish them the better in life. Bill Murray plays a man going through a mid life crisis where he feels like there is a sudden void in his life. Scarlett Johansson is a young girl who is in the infant stages f her marriage and recently graduated, but doesn’t know what to do with her life. They both balance each other out and fill in the wholes the other lacks. Their on screen chemistry is sweet, however the romantic aspect often becomes a bit weird.

Overall, “Lost In Translation” is a solid film. Its writing is top class, but the overall story is missing that extra “umph” to take it to another place. The movie also teeters on boring, but the good parts and the depth are worth the slower pace. I give it 3.5/5, a solid romantic tale.
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7
SpangleMay 30, 2014
A loveletter to love and attraction, Lost in Translation is a moving film that is certainly not flawless. On the positive side, Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson are phenomenal and their chemistry is great. It is amazing to believe thatA loveletter to love and attraction, Lost in Translation is a moving film that is certainly not flawless. On the positive side, Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson are phenomenal and their chemistry is great. It is amazing to believe that Johansson was 17 at the time that this one was filmed. The cinematography of the film is also gorgeous. Sofia Coppola picked a great location for this one in Japan and really maximized its potential with the look of the film. In addition, as the two become closer-and-closer, but have obvious things preventing them from being together (both being married for starters), it is a charming film that shows how the best things in life can be unplanned and completely unexpected. The way in which their relationships with their spouses, or lack thereof, is also very well done. The amount of development that happens there and with the characters themselves in the short time frame of the film is impressive. For a romantic film, it was never mushy or fake, rather it felt completely genuine and natural, while also being funny at times to lighten the mood.

On the negative side of things, this one certainly is not a loveletter to marriage. Rather, it feels as if the film's goal is to argue against marriage at times as both people deal with unhappy marriages. As they move closer together, the fact that they are married to other people is a disturbing element for me. There are many things that could keep them apart (age being a major one) that would keep that "we want to be together but can't be" element alive, so I did not enjoy that Coppola chose marriage as the thing that keeps them apart. In addition, the age difference is a tad creepy. Murray is over 50 here and Johansson is 17. The fact that they are forming this type of relationship is a tad off-putting. The same effect could have been created with a younger actor instead of Murray or an older one instead of Johansson. Finally, the criticism the film has faced for its portrayal of the Japanese is fair. The portrayal is there to exaggerate the differences between the two protagonists and the culture that surrounds them, but it feels more mocking and offensive than simply showing how their culture is different from ours.
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7
night4Apr 28, 2016
It may not have enough action for some people, but I really enjoyed it and I'm glad I gave it a shot.

The acting is so good it breathes life into what could have otherwise been a dull movie.
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