Cape Nostalgia

2015 February 28
by Stacy Smith

WIT Life is a periodic series written by professional Writer/Interpreter/Translator Stacy Smith (Kumamoto-ken CIR, 2000-03). She starts her day by watching Fujisankei’s newscast in Japanese, and here she shares some of the interesting tidbits and trends along with her own observations.

I’ve been on the road for the majority of this month, and have been glad to escape the cold weather.  Now that March is around the corner, hopefully temps will warm up and we can look forward to spring and sakura season!  I was lucky enough to finish my business trip in Honolulu, which as usual was flooded with Japanese tourists, and took a vacation afterwards in Kauai, which was peacefully free from them.  Before that my interpreting took me to Washington, Minneapolis and Portland, and I found plenty of fun Japanese influences along the way.

During my flight home from Hawaii I watched the film ふしぎな岬の物語 (Fushigi na misaki no monogatari) or Cape Nostalgia, which I have wanted to see since it came out at the end of last year in Japan and got rave reviews.  It is based on a book by Akio Morisawa, and tells the story of a café situated along a small cape in Chiba that is run by an elderly woman named Etsuko who is aided by her nephew Koji.  The plot doesn’t sound like much, but it is brought to life by the amazing cast.  Koji is played by one of my favorites Hiroshi Abe, and Etsuko is the perenially great Sayuri Yoshinaga.

The supporting cast is also wonderful, especially Tsurube Shofukutei in the role of Tani who has pined for Etsuko for decades (If you haven’t seen him in Dear Doctor and About Her Brother, go see them immediately as he is amazing in both).  Despite its simple premise, this lovely film will keep you absorbed from start to finish as you get more and more involved in the characters’ lives.

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