An exploration equally of grief and wonder, Drive My Car is completely entrancing – the latest film from Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, it’s been lauded by film critics ever since its triumphant turn at the Cannes film festival. Deserving winner of the Best International Feature Film at 2022’s Academy Awards, it’s finally available on DVD & Bluray, for every viewer to delve into…
Yûsuke (Hidetoshi Nishijima), a successful actor and theatre director, meets driver Misaki (Tôko Miura), where they confide in each other over their painful and difficult losses (Yûsuke’s wife, Misaki’s mother) whilst Yûsuke prepares to play the lead in Uncle Vanya as well as working on another play behind the scenes. While this extra work is intended to take his mind off the longing for his wife, it unravels him in ways that are even surprising to himself. Nishijima is heartbreaking, playing Yûsuke accurately in his deeply pained way throughout the film, while Miura is also impressive as the mysterious Misaki, who we realise early on is flawed, but the closing part of the film she really comes into her own.
With enthralling set pieces and camera shots, lingering behind our characters as they try to decipher each other, Drive My Car is exquisitely moving throughout its runtime, as Yûsuke discovers more truths about his wife and her past, and grows closer to Misaki and his own cast & crew, who all play their own roles in his story (and each other’s…)
Also watch: Burning, Minari, Shoplifters
For fans of: An Autumn Afternoon, Late Spring, The Life Of Oharu