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Tony Takitani

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Quiet and subdued but finally heartrending, this Japanese drama by Jun Ichikawa goes bone-deep into its title character, a solitary technical illustrator who fails to comprehend his own piercing loneliness until he falls in love with his young assistant. She turns out to be as emotionally starved as he is, and though caring for her enriches his life, he's not nearly as prepared to care for himself. Adapted from a New Yorker story by Haruki Murakami, the narrative unfolds almost entirely in voice-over, its elegiac tone enhanced by Ryuichi Sakamoto's pensive piano score and Ichikawa's slow but relentless tracking shots. The hues are so muted you may remember this as a black-and-white film, but its emotions are as vivid as primary colors. In Japanese with subtitles. 75 min. Landmark's Century Centre.

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