|Directed by||Tetsuya Nakashima|
|Written by||Tetsuya Nakashima|
by Kanae Minato
|Edited by||Yoshiyuki Koike|
|Distributed by||Toho Company|
|Box office||$45.2 million|
Confessions (告白, Kokuhaku) is a 2010 Japanese thriller film directed by Tetsuya Nakashima, based on author Kanae Minato's 2008 debut mystery novel that won the 2009 Honya Taisho award (Japan Booksellers Award). The film was both a commercial and critical success. It was awarded Best Picture at the 34th Japan Academy Prize and 53rd Blue Ribbon Awards and was shortlisted at the 83rd Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film.
Junior high school teacher Yuko Moriguchi (Takako Matsu) announces to her rowdy, disrespectful class that she will resign before spring break. She explains that because the HIV-positive father of her four-year-old daughter Manami was ill, she used to bring the girl to school with her. One day, Manami was found drowned in the school swimming pool. She explains that two students in her class, whom she dubs "Student A" and "Student B", had murdered her daughter. Yuko had found a small bunny purse among Manami's belongings which did not belong there, which led her to question Shuya Watanabe, one of her students. Shuya, Student A, immediately admitted to killing Manami, then mocked her compassionate reaction with, "Just kidding."
Having revealed their identities, Yuko explains that because the killers, as minors, are protected by the Juvenile Law of 1947, turning them in wouldn't make a difference. As a teacher, she believes she must teach them a lesson by making them amend for their mistakes. Yuko reveals she injected Manami's father's HIV-contaminated blood in the milk cartons of the two students she claims murdered Manami. The rest of the film switches between the aftermath of Yuko's confession and the events before the confession through first-person narratives from Yuko and three of her students. Naoki Shimomura, the Student B, becomes a shut-in because he believes he has contracted AIDS from drinking the contaminated milk. His mother realizes her son was involved in the death of Moriguchi's daughter and decides to commit murder-suicide to free the both of them from their torment. However, in the ensuing struggle, Naoki kills his mother and the police arrest him. Meanwhile, Shuya explains that his mother abused him before leaving to pursue her scientific career. Her abandonment drove him to thrive in science, from making small inventions to recording his killing and dissecting of animals.
Shuya's first public invention, an electric anti-mugger wallet, earned him a science fair award, but failed to make headlines as the media was distracted by the "Lunacy Murder" case. He upgraded the anti-mugger wallet, decided to try it out on someone, and roped Naoki in to help. They decided to test the wallet on Yuko's daughter, but when they did so, the girl was rendered unconscious. Shuya mistook this as death. Enraged, Naoki threw Manami into the pool where she drowned, proving that he was the real killer. Classmate Mizuki Kitahara tells Shuya that she believes Yuko lied about the contaminated milk as it was an implausible method of transmission. Mizuki eventually confesses to him that she identifies with the girl in the "Lunacy Murder" case, who poisoned her parents. The two become romantically involved, but Shuya kills Mizuki after a confrontation over his Oedipus complex.
Shuya visits the university where his mother works, expecting to reunite with her, but discovers she has remarried. Believing she has forgotten him, he plants a bomb in his school where the graduation ceremony is to be held and he is to give a speech. To his surprise, the bomb seemingly does not go off. Shuya then receives a call from Yuko, who says that she has relocated the bomb to his mother's office. She explains that it is her ultimate revenge, to let Shuya's mother die by his own hands, and claims that with her revenge completed, Shuya's path to redemption has begun. As the screen darkens, Yuko chuckles and says, "Just kidding."
Soon after the film had started showing in 266 cinemas, it had already grossed ¥269,835,200 with 194,893 audiences, breaking the record previously held by I Give My First Love to You . It kept grossing and became the highest grossing film for 4 consecutive weeks in June. It grossed over ¥3.5 billion in the 8th screening week.[ citation needed ] The gross revenue finally reached a total of ¥3.85 billion in Japan. It is ranked as the 7th highest-grossing Japanese film in 2010. The film also grossed $2,625,175 overseas in other Asian countries, bringing the worldwide total to $45,203,103.
The film received a widespread positive response globally, with critics praising a variety of factors including good adaptation from the book, the director's style, and the acting, particularly by the child actors. The film holds an 81% 'fresh' average score at Rotten Tomatoes.Seongyong Cho of RogerEbert.com called it a "gut-chilling Japanese thriller". One notable negative review came from Mark Kermode of the BBC, who said that its style made it 'virtually impenetrable on an emotional level'.
The film was selected as the Japanese entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 83rd Academy Awards.In January 2011, it made the January shortlist and advanced to the next round of voting. In Japan, it firstly won Best Film and Best Supporting Actress at the 53rd Blue Ribbon Awards, which is one of the most prestigious national cinema awards in Japan. Then, it won the awards for Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay and Best Editor at the 34th Japan Academy Prize. Also, it had six nominations in 5th Asian Film Awards, which is one of the films with most nominations (with Let the Bullets Fly ).
In April, the film won Best Asian Film (similar to Best Foreign Language Film, though only Asian films which have been screened in Hong Kong are admitted to join) at the 30th Hong Kong Film Awards. At the 31st Hong Kong Film Awards, the category of Best Asian Film was replaced by a new category called Best Film of Mainland and Taiwan which means that only Chinese and Taiwanese films can remain to compete for such an award. Therefore, Confessions has become the last winner of Best Asian Film.
|List of accolades|
|Award / Film festival||Category||Recipient(s)||Result|
|14th Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival||Jury's Special Award||Confessions||Won|
|35th Hochi Film Awards||Best Director||Tetsuya Nakashima||Won|
|84th Kinema Junpo Best 10 Film Awards||Best Film||Confessions||2nd Place|
|53rd Blue Ribbon Awards||Best Picture||Confessions||Won|
|Best Supporting Actress||Yoshino Kimura||Won|
|34th Japan Academy Prize||Best Picture||Confessions||Won|
|Best Director||Tetsuya Nakashima||Won|
|Best Screenplay||Tetsuya Nakashima||Won|
|Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role||Takako Matsu||Nominated|
|Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role||Masaki Okada||Nominated|
|Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role||Yoshino Kimura||Nominated|
|Best Cinematography||Masakazu Ato, Atsushi Ozawa||Nominated|
|Best Lighting Direction||Susumu Takakura||Nominated|
|Best Art Direction||Towako Kuwajima||Nominated|
|Best Sound Recording||Masato Yano||Nominated|
|Best Film Editing||Yoshiyuki Koike||Won|
|5th Asian Film Awards||Best Film||Confessions||Nominated|
|Best Director||Tetsuya Nakashima||Nominated|
|Best Actress||Takako Matsu||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Actor||Masaki Okada||Nominated|
|Best Supporting Actress||Yoshino Kimura||Nominated|
|Best Film Editor||Yoshiyuki Koike||Nominated|
|83rd Academy Awards||Best Foreign Language Film||Confessions||Made January Shortlist|
|30th Hong Kong Film Awards||Best Asian Film||Confessions||Won|
All About My Mother is a 1999 comedy-drama film written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar, and starring Cecilia Roth, Marisa Paredes, Candela Peña, Antonia San Juan, Penélope Cruz and Rosa Maria Sardà.
Ring is a 1998 Japanese horror film directed by Hideo Nakata, based on the 1991 novel by Koji Suzuki. The film stars Nanako Matsushima, Miki Nakatani and Hiroyuki Sanada, and follows a reporter who is racing to investigate the mystery behind a cursed videotape that kills the viewer seven days after watching it. It is titled The Ring in English in Japan and released as Ringu in North America.
Yūko Takeuchi was a Japanese actress. She is known for her roles in television series Asuka (1999), Pride (2004), FlashForward (2009), and Miss Sherlock (2018) as well as films such as Ring (1998), Yomigaeri (2003), and Dog in a Sidecar (2007).
Talk to Her is a 2002 Spanish drama written and directed by Pedro Almodóvar, and starring Javier Cámara, Darío Grandinetti, Leonor Watling, Geraldine Chaplin, and Rosario Flores. The film follows two men who form an unlikely friendship as they care for two women who are both in comas.
Orange Days is a drama series that aired in Japan on TBS in 2004.
Itazura na Kiss is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Kaoru Tada. Itazura na Kiss was first serialized and published in 1990 by Shueisha through Bessatsu Margaret magazine. It became successful very quickly and became the manga series that Tada became known for in Japan. The manga became so popular that three live TV series have been made so far in 1996, 2005, and 2010, with a sequel of the 2005 drama in late 2007. In 2013, a remake of the Japanese live TV series, called Mischievous Kiss: Love in Tokyo, was made. Despite its success, the manga was never completed due to the unexpected death of the author in a house accident while she was moving to another house with her husband and son. However the manga series continues to be published with the permission of the artist's widower.
Tetsuya Nakashima (中島哲也) is a Japanese film director and screenwriter.
Cloistered Nun: Runa's Confession (1976) is a Japanese pink film in the nunsploitation genre starring pop singer Luna Takamura, directed by Masaru Konuma and produced by Nikkatsu. AllRovi reports of the film, "As Konuma is not one to pull political punches for the sake of lightweight erotic fluff, the film is far more pointed than the numerous European 'sexy nun' films it ostensibly resembles." Jasper Sharp calls it "a typically profane offering in the most peculiar of Nikkatsu's pornographic subgenres".
Sandakan No. 8 is a 1974 Japanese film directed by Kei Kumai. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Twin Sisters of Kyoto is a 1963 Japanese drama film directed by Noboru Nakamura and the first adaptation of the novel The Old Capital (1962) by Nobel prize-winning Japanese writer Yasunari Kawabata. The film was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
Life is a Japanese shōjo manga series written and illustrated by Keiko Suenobu. Life was serialized in Bessatsu Friend, a publication of Kodansha, and deals with many controversial topics such as self-harm, bullying, rape, attempted suicide, attempted murder, molestation, bondage (BDSM), and manipulation. In 2006, it won the Kodansha Manga Award for shōjo. Suenobu created a sequel to the manga, titled Life 2: Giver Taker, which started serialization in the seinen manga magazine Monthly Afternoon on June 25, 2016.
Mother is a 2009 South Korean thriller film directed by Bong Joon-ho, starring Kim Hye-ja and Won Bin. The plot follows a mother who, after her intellectually disabled son is accused of the murder of a young girl, attempts to find the true killer in order to get her son freed.
Aftershock is a 2010 Chinese disaster-drama film directed by Feng Xiaogang and produced by Huayi Brothers, starring Zhang Zifeng, Xu Fan, Zhang Jingchu, Chen Daoming, Lu Yi, Zhang Guoqiang and Li Chen. The film is based on a novella by Zhang Ling and depicts the aftermath of the 1976 Tangshan earthquake. It was released in China on 22 July 2010, and is the first "big commercial film" IMAX film created outside the United States. The film was a major box office success, and has grossed more than US$100 million at the Chinese box office.
Lion's Den is a 2008 Argentine drama film directed, co-written, co-produced and co-edited by Pablo Trapero. Addressing motherhood within the prison system, it stars Martina Gusmán, Elli Medeiros and Rodrigo Santoro. The film competed in the Competition at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival.
Kanae Minato is a Japanese writer of crime fiction and thrillers. She is a member of the Mystery Writers of Japan and the Honkaku Mystery Writers Club of Japan. She is a 2015 recipient of the Alex Awards.
Under the Shadow is a 2016 Persian-language psychological horror film written and directed by Iranian-born Babak Anvari as his directorial debut. A mother and daughter are haunted by a mysterious evil in 1980s Tehran, during the War of the Cities. The film stars Narges Rashidi, Avin Manshadi, Bobby Naderi, Ray Haratian, and Arash Marandi.
Nagasaki: Memories of My Son is a 2015 Japanese drama film directed by Yoji Yamada and starring Sayuri Yoshinaga and Kazunari Ninomiya. It was selected as the Japanese entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 89th Academy Awards but it was not nominated.
Shoplifters is a 2018 Japanese drama film directed, written and edited by Hirokazu Kore-eda. Starring Lily Franky and Sakura Ando, it is about a non-biological family that relies on shoplifting to cope with a life of poverty.