Review of Lost in Translation

After wasting 100 minutes in a cafe, I would say it might be the last time I watched Sofia Coppola's movie. Her work, Lost in Translation, an Oscar winner in 2003, spread out its muddled storyline from Tokyo Park Hyatt Hotel. I don't know what Sofia was driving at, but it seems she was aimed at expressing intricacies of loneliness and love between two Americans who met in an exotic city -- apparently, from her perspective, Tokyo was a perfect representation of Oriental culture and a striking, tenable contrast of American value. I did admit that Tokyo, as the background of the story, is fair choice, but the way Sofia telling the tale was cliche-ridden and unpleasant.

A good director would never tell his or her audience what he or she want to say from the mouth of actors.

Sofia failed, many times in her plot. A typical example was, Charlotte, a Yale graduate in philosophy, sobbed to her parent 'I went to a shrine today' and just 'didn't feel anything'. What a sophisticated director would do is to simply freeze-frame a series of changes of facial expressions in a full-length shot, with no lines. A shot talks. I can understand Sofia somehow wanted to draw a distinction between culture. But some scenes were just out of turn with the occasion and I would say a great deal of time was wasted on laughing at Japanese's lifestyle which was actually above reproach -- Japanese speak Japanese. Kar Wai Wong had already set an awesome example for Sofia in his movie, Happy Together, when it comes to expressing the subject loneliness and love under culture shock. I may draw more comparison on them if I have time(usually no). So that's all of this quick review.

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