7.7/10
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Kirschblüten - Hanami (2008)

Unrated | | Drama, Romance | 6 March 2008 (Germany)
After Rudi's wife Trudi suddenly dies, he travels to Japan to fulfill her dream of being a Butoh dancer.

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ON DISC
8 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Elmar Wepper ...
Rudi Angermeier
...
Trudi Angermeier
Aya Irizuki ...
Yu
Maximilian Brückner ...
Karl Angermeier
...
Franzi
...
Karolin Angermeier
Felix Eitner ...
Klaus Angermeier
...
Emma Angermeier
Celine Tanneberger ...
Celine Angermeier
Robert Döhlert ...
Tadashi Endo ...
Butoh Dancer
Sarah Camp ...
Butcher
Gerhard Wittmann ...
Doctor #1
Veith von Fürstenberg ...
Doctor #2
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Walter Hess ...
Pfarrer

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Storyline

When Trudi learns that her husband Rudi is dangerously ill, she suggests visiting their children in Berlin without telling him the truth. As Franzi and Karl don't care much about their parents, Trudi and Rudi go to the Baltic Sea, where Trudi suddenly dies. Rudi is thrown out of gear, even more when he learns that his wife wanted to live a totally different life in Japan... Written by fippi2000

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

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Unrated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

6 March 2008 (Germany)  »

Also Known As:

Cherry Blossoms - Hanami  »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$3,322 (USA) (16 January 2009)

Gross:

$103,797 (USA) (19 June 2009)
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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Quotes

Karolin Angermeier: Your cue, mama.
Klaus Angermeier: Go on, mama.
Karolin Angermeier: Mama, please, 'The Mayfly'. Come one, mama. For us.
Trudi Angermeier: 'Stop! What you're doing is murder!'
Klaus Angermeier: 'Such cruelty is not a must... '
Trudi Angermeier: 'The Mayfly has but one short day... '
Karolin Angermeier: 'One single day of pain, one single day of lust... '
[chuckles]
Rudi Angermeier: 'Oh, let it hover there, until it meets it's end. It's heavens last forever. It's life one day to make amends.' Right, mama?
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Connections

Version of Tokyo Story (1953) See more »

Soundtracks

Familienszene
by Claus Bantzer
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User Reviews

 
Rebirth Under the Cherry Trees
16 January 2009 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

Doris Dörrie's "Cherry Blossoms" - opening "Berlin and Beyond" Thursday, in U.S. release on Friday - has two original titles, one in German: "Kirschblüten," which means cherry blossoms, and another in Japanese: "Hanami," which doesn't.

The Japanese equivalent to the English and German titles would be "sakura"; "hanami" is a national ceremony/celebration/holiday of WATCHING the blossoms open. Dating back to the 8th century, hanami is an event without parallel outside Japan.

The difference between the titles is a subtle, but meaningful message. Just as the blossoms in themselves are different from the veritable cult surrounding them in Japan, Dörrie's characters live in two different worlds, acting differently, first clashing (similarly to "Lost in Translation") and then - somewhat mysteriously - cohere. With this complex, effective, and moving story, Dörrie, who has spent more than three decades writing and directing "interesting and different" films of varying quality, has reached a pinnacle of her career. (She owes a debt of gratitude to Yasujiro Ozu, especially his "Tokyo Story.")

"Germans and Japanese," Dörrie has said, "are really very much alike — incredibly repressed and very irrational at the same time." This vague and rather ridiculous generalization actually seems to come to life in "Cherry Blossoms."

One of Germany's best-known TV stars, Elmar Wepper, appears in his first movie role, and he nails the character of Rudi Angermeier, a cartoonishly ordinary man on an extraordinary journey. Unknown to him, he is near the end of his life, as he slowly, believably emerges from a stolid German middle-class life of unvariable routine to traverse distance and radically different cultures, all the way to Mount Fuji, dancing butoh.

There are two remarkable co-stars along Rudi's adventure: his wife, Trudi, played by the glamorous actress Hannelore Elsner, appearing heroically unglamorous here to fit the role of a plain housefrau; and Aya Irizuki as Yu.

Yu is one of those rare cinematic creations, a character you may not understand, but one who will stay with you. This waif, runaway, street artist is as bizarre a representative of Japan as - going back to "Lost in Translation" again - Bill Murray's Premium Fantasy woman ("Rip my stockings!") and yet she also evokes Giulietta Masina's character in "La Strada," a couple of continents away.

Watching Rudi and Yu under the cherry blossoms, with the strangely elusive Mount Fuji in the background finally peeking out from behind the clouds, is among the more memorable scenes in contemporary cinema.


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