Article: Japanese Movies About Loneliness

Loneliness and isolation are compelling themes that are often hard to portray gracefully in cinema. Japanese cinema is known for portraying such deep themes in a meaningful manner. In this list, we will discuss some of the best movies that depict the themes of loneliness and isolation in modern society.

1. Ikiru

We follow the story of an ordinary man named Kanji Watanabe. Kanji is a bureaucrat who has spent more than thirty years working in the same department. His life has become dull and monotonous for him. The excitement and the zest he once had for life have completely disappeared. One day, Kanji learns that he has stomach cancer and has a few months to live. This pushes Kanji to, live to the fullest. He starts an introspective journey that makes him understand what life is about.

2. Nobody Knows 

Nobody Knows is a heartbreaking movie about family and the lengths one can go to, to protect their siblings. After their mother Keiko abandons them, Akira must protect and look after the rest of his siblings. After running out of money, Akira tries his best to find work and other means of earning money. He tries to look after his siblings, all the while living without money, electricity, gas, or water.

3. A Bride For Rip Van Winkle

We follow the life of a part-time teacher named Nanami. She had grown weary of the world and had become numb to the world and the people around her. The only solace she gets is through chatting with people online via a social network called Planet. One day she meets a man called Tetsuya and they slowly start dating. They eventually get engaged. Tetsuya asks, Nanami to increase the guests for their wedding. Nanami chooses to contact an online friend named Amuro for help. However, after the ceremony, Tetsuya’s mother fights with Nanami and calls her a cheater and a liar. Becoming desperate and heartbroken Nanami moves into a hotel and starts working there as a maid. One day Nanami gets hired to become a maid at an old mansion. She eventually learns that Amuro, the mansion, and its residents have secrets.

4. Himizu

This movie is a tearjerker, to put it lightly. We follow the lives of two teenagers as they try to navigate their lives while trying to survive their abusive households. After a devastating earthquake, the two classmates bond with each other as they try to navigate through their pain. They find kindness and solace in each other.

5. Shoplifters

We follow, Osamu Shibata, a day laborer who enjoys shoplifting. He is an unconventional man and enjoys spending time with his son. One day Osamu spots a little girl in the cold and quickly decides to take her home. His wife is less than pleased with his decision. However, she too develops a bond with the little girl and takes care of her. She later learns that the girl’s name is Yuri. The family lives with their grandmother Hatsu and often relies on her pension to make ends meet.

6. After The Storm

While working as a private detective, Ryota dwells on his past accomplishments. He dreams of going back in time when he used to be an acknowledged writer. After the death of his father, his mother and his ex-wife try to move on and continue their lives while Ryota remains stuck in the past. Despite not being a good role model, Ryota tries desperately to restart his life and become involved in the life of his son.

7. Pulse 

After the suicide of a close friend, a group of young friends in Tokyo begin experiencing strange and abnormal events in their lives. While in mourning the group try to navigate through everyday life. One of them starts seeing weird apparitions in their home while another friend’s computer starts randomly glitching. They assume their friend is trying to reach out to them even after death. However, something sinister is afoot.

8. If Cats Disappeared From The World 

While watching this movie, we are confronted by the solitude and the mortality of human existence. We are confronted by the meaning of life, and we are forced to evaluate the relationships we have in our own lives. When a young mail carrier learns that he has only days of life due to a terminal illness, he must confront and analyze the relationship he has with his parents, friends, and ex-partners.

9. Sweet Bean

We follow Sentaro, the owner of a lovely bakery who is hounded by his financial debts. One day, he comes across an older woman looking for some work. After tasting her sweets, Sentaro immediately hires her. Sentaro and the woman start working together and soon develop a close bond.

10. The Tokyo Night Sky Is Always The Densest Shade Of Blue 

We follow Mika and Shinji, two young adults trying to navigate their lives in Tokyo. Mika is a hardworking nurse by day and a hostess at a girl’s bar at night. Shinji is a construction worker who is trying to make ends meet.