Gaijin perspective from malaysia!

drainer at drainer at
Sat Apr 3 23:29:13 EST 2004

 I was just posting about your reply regarding Lost in Translation from a
few months ago... something about it being the Japan we meet in the first
class hotel circuit. I think that was a good observation. Generally, from
what I've seen so far, there are two types of people who take delight in
this film: people who have been to Japan and stayed in first class hotels,
and those who have never been to Japan but feel that somehow they will be
"understood" if they were ever to come here (of course, you must also take
the soundtrack of the movie into consideration to understand that

  Also, I think that you have to take into account that the characters are
financially secure and American -- that makes a big difference, especially
with the scene that was mentioned here regarding the man reading an explicit
comic book in the subway. Or the fact that their bonding with Japanese
culture takes place in a karaoke both... but I digress. The real issue here
is not exploitation of culture, but exploitation of a perceived "national
cool." But I guess that the grass is indeed always greener on the other
side. (And I'm incoherent here, but, some may get the point.)


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Joseph Murphy" <urj7 at>
To: <KineJapan at>
Sent: Saturday, April 03, 2004 11:13 PM
Subject: Re: Gaijin perspective from malaysia!

> I think the main problem is that it's a disappointment as a Sophia
> Coppola film. Her handling of 1970's suburbia and the weird stresses
> of a catholic family in the U.S. in Virgin Suicides were so on
> target, so finely observed, and so generous, that there was some hope
> she would bring the same sensitivity to observing the context of
> Japan.  Instead she served up a lot of broad gags that strike people
> who know the context as inane.  It's a disappointment that she did
> not see fit to bring the same quality of observation to Lost In
> Translation.  And I think it's already been noted on this list that
> the movie received an extremely limited opening in Japan for a major
> Hollywood film.
> J. Murphy
> >I'm actually a bit curious about the disliking of this
> >film on the KineJapan list, especially since it has
> >been so highly regarded elsewhere.  What I find most
> >perplexing is that I didn't find Lost in Translation
> >to be about Japan at all
> -- 
> Univ. of Florida
> Gainesville, FL 32601, USA
> <>

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