Casting Blossoms To The Sky

The latest epic from the director of House! “Nobuhiko Obayashi still remains impressively productive for his advanced age and, more importantly, is capable of proving he is still full of surprises. Over the course of its breathless 160 minutes, [Casting Blossoms] uses a reporter’s desire to visit the city of Nagaoka as a framework for its nearly essay-like exploration of the city’s links to WWII, and personal accounts of those who survived the destructive events of the past (with some of the real-life inspirations behind certain characters making onscreen appearances). Jumping from speaker to speaker at hot-potato speeds and virtually pelting the viewers with facts and stories, Obayashi weaves together the hidden details of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombing operations, incendiary bombing incidents, Pearl Harbor, the art of firework creation, a young student’s ambitious theatrical production and more into an exhilarating and touching cinematic symphony. The daring, dreamlike imagery only sweetens the deal, often reaching pulse-quickening heights — who could ever forget the sight of a group of uniformed students perched upright on their unicycles coasting across the frame in single-file along a country road?” — Marc Saint-Cyr, J-Film Pow-Wow
Dir. Nobuhiko Obayashi, 2012, digital presentation, 160 min.