Our Little Sister

Hirokazu Kore-eda delivers another quietly moving slice-of-life family drama

Film Review by Josh Slater-Williams | 11 Apr 2016
Film title: Our Little Sister
Director: Hirokazu Kore-eda
Starring: Haruka Ayase, Suzu Hirose, Masami Nagasawa, Kaho
Release date: 15 Apr
Certificate: PG

Based on manga Umimachi DiaryOur Little Sister sees three upwardly mobile adult sisters attend the funeral of the father who left their family years ago for another woman. At the ceremony they meet, for the first time, their teenage half-sister Suzu (Hirose), who’s unhappily living with her self-absorbed mother. On a whim, oldest sibling Sachi (Ayase), the de facto head of the family unit, invites the teen to come live with the trio in the ancestral home they inherited from their grandmother, in which they've fostered the cheerful atmosphere of a sorority house.

For anyone familiar with the trajectory of Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda's career, his latest film will feel right at home. Like I Wish and Still Walking, this is a slice-of-life drama about a fractured family that never explodes into big emotional scenes of wild gestures. Instead, there’s a leisurely focus on the little details of the in-between moments of life, no less powerful for a lack of showiness. Perfectly pitched and bolstered by four beautiful lead performances, Our Little Sister, with the gentlest of touches, both breaks one’s heart and makes it swoon. [Josh Slater-Williams]

Released by Curzon/Artificial Eye