Shoplifters (2018)

In the tradition of Yasujirō Ozu, the master of his time, Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda has been producing domestic dramas about the relationships between members of different families for years. The blood ties in Shoplifters are quite small. Instead, this time the family consists of a group of outcasts. They live together, spend time together and are dependent on each other. Sometimes there is even something like affection to be seen. Osamu (Lily Franky), who takes the role of the father, and the young Shota (Kairi Jō) are shoplifters and a well-rehearsed duo. On the way home they find little Yuri (Miyu Sasaki) locked out in the cold night. Without further ado they take the girl home with them. Is that kidnapping? They decide: No. Shoplifters deals with the question of what constitutes a family, as Kore-eda’s film Like Father, Like Son (2013) did in a different form. The family of six lives in a small hut. They are poor, criminal, largely uneducated and only like each other to a limited extent. Even a family that can be chosen, contrary to the old proverb, is not free of mistakes. Nevertheless it is possibly still better than the actual relatives. Shoplifters is a socially conscious film that not only captures the fates of some individuals. Kore-eda manages without melodrama and sentimentality. The movie is intimate and cheerful for long stretches, but makes a skilful turn into sobering realms. Since the adults are weak and sometimes devious characters, the really pure moments fall to the two children.

Original Title: Manbiki Kazoku (万引き家族)
Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda
Cast: Lily Franky, Sakura Ando, Mayu Matsuoka, Kairi Jō, Miyu Sasaki, Kirin Kiki
Genre: Drama, Crime
Rated: R
Runtime: 121 min.
Release Date: 2018/05/13 (at Cannes)
Screenplay: Hirokazu Kore-eda
Editor: Hirokazu Kore-eda
Cinematography: Kondo Ryuto
Language: Japanese

Winner of the 2018 Palme d’Or