0.5 mm ★★★★

A three hour runtime is a commitment to anyone you ask, but I'm starting to realize that a lot of movies that go on for that long can't really be shortened all that much. I would've liked to test this little claim with Momoko Ando's 0.5 mm, but I was too busy with being enraptured by the stories that were being told and Sakura Ando's performance as the resourceful and perceptive Sawa Yamagishi. The kind of vocabulary needed to adequately praise Sakura's talents in telegraphing emotions while maintaining the crazy amount of charm she exudes is beyond me, but she's a great person to follow for three hours nonetheless. It helps that the character she plays is written pretty well, especially for being someone who the audience can never fully know.

Sawa's extended interactions with the elders whose lives she forcefully injects herself into reveal a good deal of the level of tolerance she as, and even more about her expanding worldview when it comes to the invisible separation between generations of people. Under that saggy layer of skin, these old people have had tons of experience, the kind that their youth probably won't ever know of for themselves. The death of an elder also means the death of a small part of an older version of society, and Sawa tries to explore this part of human existence when she's giving the geezers a hard time or just helping them out. It becomes clear that the constant of being emotionally burdened is a trait that people of all ages can share. It's something that plagues many lives but also defines them in some way. 0.5 mm really does a lot despite how slow-moving it can be at times, and with the Ando sisters at the helm of this particular story, I don't think it could've turned out any better. Can't wait to see what they do next.