16
Jan 04

I think I understand all the reasons why people don’t like Lost in Translation,

Do You SeePost a comment • 217 views

I think I understand all the reasons why people don’t like Lost in Translation, but ironically for the film I think much of these criticisms are due to interpretation. Unsurprisingly, middle class single me, positioned socially somewhere between Scarlett and Bill, found it heartbreaking good. I laughed, I cried (mind you I cried at the trailer so it was not much of a push). Now all I have to do is try and avoid interviews with Sofia Coppola which consistently make we want to dislike the movie.

So let me look at some of those criticisms. The demonising of Bob’s wife. I just don’t see it. Of course our view of her is controlled by Bob, but even he seems aware that the potential problems in their relationship are natural developments of the changes that kids bring, ageing brings. The portrayal of Giovani Ribisi’s husband as uncaring, superficial, stupid. There is a degree of reaction against his wife, it worries him that she seems to be drifting. But in the end he is the busy one, he is the reason they are there. nd did you ever get into the wrong relationship? Wrong marriage even? Possibly.

The films portrayal of Japan is one of a tourist, which is what is expected. It could have been set anywhere really, Japan happens to offer plenty of interesting visuals too. Patronising, only in as much as the characters are patronising (which is slightly). But this is not a film about Japan, alienation or even mid-life crises. This is just a film about a meeting which has in its conception carries the bitterness of parting. Before Sunrise is a good reference, with perhaps less waffly dialogue (though nothing in Lost In Translation is particularly more intelligent than what Linklater offered in that film). People meet, people get on, people leave. Its sad. But thta’s life.

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