Article: 10 Japanese Movies You Ought To Watch Before You Die

Movies are a must-do. Irrespective of what language they are in, or who the cast is, there are some masterpieces across the globe that need to be appreciated. You might want to follow up on this article, to know some of this Japanese goodness.

1. Dare Mo Shiranai (Nobody Knows)

Akira, Kyoko, Shigeru, and Yuki are half-siblings, having different fathers. Since the three younger children are living in the apartment illegally, they have to live like ghosts. They cannot be seen, cannot be heard. They cannot go outside, and cannot go to school. Their mother ends up leaving them alone for weeks, and then one time, she just doesn’t come back. Forced to rely on themselves and each other, the children try to do all that they can in order to survive. This movie is based on the 1988 “Sugamo Child Abandonment Case”.


2. Batoru Rowaiaru (Battle Royale)

In dystopian Japan, a class of 42 9th graders is sent to a deserted island. Each of them is provided with a map, food, and weapons. All students are sent with an expensive collar around their neck. The collar has been rigged to explode if they break any rules. The students have a relatively simple mission, kill each other, until only one survives. The catch? If more than one student survives, the collar will kill them all.


3. Soshite Chichi Ni Naru (Like Father, Like Son)

Ryota lives a happy life with his wife and six-year-old son. The days go smoothly until Ryota gets a call from the hospital. Ryota is informed that the son he had been raising wasn’t his biological son and that his son was accidentally switched. This news devastated Ryota and his wife. The couple must choose between keeping the child they had been raising or taking back their biological child.


4. Okuribito (Departures)

Daigo is a cellist whose career is in pieces after the orchestra he played for is dissolved. Desperate to support his steadfast wife, Daido applies for a job at NK Agency. He is given the job of ‘assisting departures’ on the spot when he goes for the interview. Initially, Daigo believes that the job is travel-related, and so he becomes perplexed when he realised that he would assist those who have literally departed from this world. With no other jobs to go after, Daigo decides to stick to the job.


5. Tsumetai Nettaigyo (Cold Fish)

Syamoto is a humble and naive exotic fish shop owner who is taken for granted by his second wife and delinquent daughter, Mitsuko. One day, Mitsuko is caught stealing, but Murata, a surprisingly friendly man, manages to get the shop attendant to not call the cops. He then proceeds to offer Mitsuko a job at his fish shop. Syamoto has no objection to Mitsuko working at Murata’s until he discovers what truly lies behind the smile Murata puts on his face.


6. Our Little Sister

Yoshino, Chika, and Sachi are three sisters in their twenties. Each of them has a job, and each of them has their own personal troubles. The sisters had been left behind by their parents. Their father had left them for another woman, and their mother had chosen to desert them. One day the girls receive news of their father’s demise and go to his funeral. There they meet their young half-sister and instantly decide and agree to bring her back with them. Suzu is a happy-go-lucky kind of child who slowly fills the holes in the hearts of the sisters with her presence.


7. Taiyo No Uta (A Song To The Sun)

Amane has no other choice but to live a life that comes alive at night. Amane has barely experienced the daytime, and it is all due to her illness. She has plagued with xeroderma pigmentosum a disease that weakens the ability to repair the damages caused by the sun’s rays. Young Amane has dreams and hopes of becoming a singer. One night while playing around outside, she comes across a young man who has lost his job and all his hope. Slowly, Amane becomes someone who brings his long-lost passion for music back alive. This movie has an American adaptation by the name of “Midnight Sun”.


8. Asa Ga Kuru (True Mothers)

Asato was given into adoption just a little after he was born. He was adopted and raised by a wealthy couple and seemed quite happy. Six years after his adoption, his birth mother shows up looking for him. The mothers, Satoko Asato’s adoptive mother, and Hikari, his birth-mother, now battle out to win the affections of their son.


9. Sweet Bean

Sentaro runs a tiny little dorayaki shop. His most frequent customers? A small group of schoolgirls. One day, he hangs a ‘help wanted’ sign outside a shop and receives two candidates. Wakana, one of his regular customers, and Touke, an old lady who has been making dorayaki for 50 years. Sentaro decides to hire Touke after he tastes her homemade dorayaki filling. His tiny shop starts seeing wonderous growth after he hires the old ‘dorayaki expert’.


10. Kokuhaku (Confessions)

Yuko is a teacher and also Manami’s mother, or was. Yuko’s daughter had died in an apparent swimming pool accident, causing her to drown. Yuko knows that that wasn’t the case. She knows that no accident happened, but a murder did. Wanting revenge for her daughter’s unjust death, Yuko sets out to uncover the truth herself.