Los Angeles: Japanese drama “Drive My Car”, an adaptation of celebrated writer Haruki Murakami’s short story by director Ryusuke Hamaguchi, won the best international film trophy at the Oscars here.
“Drive My Car” bested fellow nominees “Flee” from Denmark, “The Hand of God” from Italy, “Lunana: A Yak in the Classroom” (Bhutan) and “The Worst Person in the World” from Norway.
“I would also like to thank the actors here and I’d like to thank all the actors who couldn’t come here,” Hamaguchi said in his acceptance speech.
Starring Hidetoshi Nishijima and Toko Miura, the film is a rumination on love, loss and acceptance through human connection.
The film follows Yusuke Kafuku (Nishijima), a renowned stage actor and director, who receives an offer to direct a production of Chekhov’s “Uncle Vanya” at a theatre festival in Hiroshima, two years after his wife’s unexpected death.
There, he meets Misaki Watari (Miura), a taciturn young woman assigned by the festival to chauffeur him in his beloved red Saab 900.
The film is also up for best picture, director and adapted screenplay for Hamaguchi. But it has already become the second most nominated Japanese film after Akira Kurosawa’s “Ran” (1985).
As Japan’s official entry, the reflective drama was a clear front-runner in the Oscars race as it had already won Golden Globe and BAFTA trophies ahead of its win at the 94th Academy Awards.
“Drive My Car” had its world premiere in competition at the 2021 Cannes Film Festival, where it won best screenplay.
The film is available for viewing on MUBI India.
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