All classifications - man-women, human-machine, reality-fiction - are as real as feeling, affect is everything, the rest is socially constructed notions of reality or classification we place in order to make sense of the nonsensical world. The anarchy that is life is beyond control, love is all that binds us, it's all that matters and human creativity and ingenuity at its core is a rejection of pre-defined circumstance. Doesn't always work but certainly refreshing in the sense that it doesn't cater nor conform to the expectations of its audience. I'm admittedly not as big on the sequels as others but The Matrix Resurrections manages to be self-reflexive and self-effacing; all we need is love. Honestly, the biggest disappointment for me is how overall, the action sequences are weaker than I would have expected.
I think what's so impressive about this film is how guilt, as it pertains to grief, is illustrated with such a mature, non-judgmental approach. Miwa Nishikawa has such an assured understanding of living, instilled with the recognition that we as individuals are never static but constantly evolving as we react and experience the external world. The central protagonists' journey to self-discovery is patiently crafted; Miwa Nishikawa trusts the audience to go on this journey with a character whose actions initially are born out of selfishness and exploitation more than notions of altruism. It's his guilt, not his grief that forces him to be performatively empathetic, and his evolution is ultimately deeply affecting. The interplay between him and this widowed, blue-collar father of two provides understated yet incisive investigations into social and economic status. Preconceptions related to class loom large, the monetary privilege he wields is transparent, yet as the film unfolds the film beautifully elucidates the social nature of being and the failings of such a lifestyle rooted in nothing more than self-fulfillment via fame and fortune. An effective melodrama that radiates warmth while not obfuscating the moral and ethical complexities of its primary characterization, The Long Excuse certainly sees Nishikawa draw from her mentor Kore-eda but the way she finds a sense of humor amongst the melancholy with assured authorship certainly stands on its own merits.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.