Atsuko Hirayanagi's Oh Lucy is a meditation on loneliness, emotional isolation, and internalized pain; an intricate character study of Setsuko, a lonely, middle-aged office worker in Tokyo, who finds herself becoming infatuated with John, her English class instructor. When John leaves Japan unexpectedly, Setsuko sets out on a quest to find him, traveling to the United States, hoping to find him in sunny, Southern California. Featuring a tone that balances light-hearted comedy with piercing drama, Oh Lucy manages both aspects well, using its comedic moments to alleviate some of the more heavy thematic assertions related to depression and self-worth. Oh Lucy is a character study that unravels itself slowly and methodically, revealing a woman who is deeply damaged in Setsukio; a character who has effectively been beaten down by and life and feels portrayed by her family - most notably her own sister, who betrayed her in the past. She is a lonely character who doesn't fit-in to Japanese society;, an outcast in both her family and work life, the two most important things in this culture. Her pursuit of John is earnest at first, yet as the film's narrative unravels it becomes apparent how much internalized emotional trauma this character is in, as we witness her conflate sexual desire & cordial relationships with love. Through this character study, Atsukio Hirayanga delivers a powerful plea for more empathy, compassion, and understanding in Japanese culture, one in which self-expression and individualism are restrained. Oh Lucy is plea for more empathy and understanding of those who suffer from depression in a culture that pays little credence to such things asserting that Lucy is just one of many who struggles to find happiness under the social expectations of society.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.