Sion Sono’s ‘the Land of Hope’ a Good Movie with Great Performances

‘The Land of Hope’ is a simple and honest movie about fear, hope and freedom when the unexpected and unavoidable comes our way. In this case, a nuclear meltdown, no less. It’s not a singular tale, in that it’s not a survival-against-the-odds story, nor an especially ‘heroic’ one, but it is the kind of experience that any family could have had in a Fukushima-like aftermath.

The devastated Nagashima in ‘The Land of Hope’.

Sion doesn’t overreach for the unique, but rather keeps the focus on realism, indulging in magic lyrical moments only on a couple of occasions. The result is a fairly empathetic experience, even when the story wanders, visiting sub-themes such as peer-pressure or mistrust of the government.

Samuel Goldwyn said that a movie ‘should start with an earthquake and build to a climax’. Sion Sono, the director of ‘The Land of Hope’, obviously took notice,
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