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Drive My Car

Yusuke Kafuku is a stage actor and director happily married to his playwright wife. Then one day she disappears.
(NR, 179 min.)


Friday, February 11, 2022


Two years after his wife’s unexpected death, Yusuke Kafuku (Hidetoshi Nishijima), a renowned stage actor and director, receives an offer to direct a production of Uncle Vanya at a theater festival in Hiroshima. There, he meets Misaki Watari (Toko Miura), a taciturn young woman assigned by the festival to chauffeur him in his beloved red Saab 900. As the production’s premiere approaches, tensions mount amongst the cast and crew, not least between Yusuke and Koji Takatsuki, a handsome TV star who shares an unwelcome connection to Yusuke’s late wife. Forced to confront painful truths raised from his past, Yusuke begins - with the help of his driver – to face the haunting mysteries his wife left behind. Adapted from Haruki Murakami’s short story, Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Drive My Car is a haunting road movie traveling a path of love, loss, acceptance, and peace. Winner of three prizes at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, including Best Screenplay. [Variance Films]

Starring: Hidetoshi Nishijima, Toko Miura, Reika Kirishima, Park Yurim, Jin Daeyeon, and Masaki Okada
Director: Ryusuke Hamaguchi
Language: Japanese, Korean, English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Tagalog, Indonesian, German, Malaysian w/ English subtitles
Genre: Drama

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"The best cinematic ride of the year."

— Barry Hertz, Globe and Mail

"The most entrancing film of the year"

— Nick Schager, The Daily Beast

"A haunting masterpiece…glides by like a dream."

— Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times

"Extraordinary. An engrossing and exalting experience."

— Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian

"An exquisitely observed drama of gently momentous connection."

— Jessica Kiang, The New York Times

"Astonishing. 'Drive My Car' marks Hamaguchi’s deserved breakthrough."

— Carlos Aguilar,

"An ineffably beautiful, far-ranging meditation on language, art, theater, theatricality—the one doesn’t always follow the other—and the challenge of living a life of purpose without regret."

— Joe Morgenstern, The Wall Street Journal

"A quiet masterpiece from the Japanese director Ryusuke Hamaguchi…A story about grief, love and work as well as the soul-sustaining, life-shaping power of art…Many movies offer pat life lessons; this one speaks about what it means to go on living."

— Manohla Dargis, The New York Times