Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Rajio no Jikan: A Movie I Need to See!

You know, I get really bummed out about the constant reiteration of the same old movie plots. Boy tries to win girl, mismatched couple with impossibly glamorous jobs fall in love while bickering about gender differences, spies and secret agents pursue each other or some ridiculous, world-changing technology or secret via dizzingly choreographed action setpieces, giant robots who talk almost exclusively in simple-minded declaratives and/or pop culture references come to earth and fight for no particular reason while Shia LaBeouf looks on, yet another shabby child-targeted cultural artifact from a simpler time is dressed up with edgy scatalogical jokes and crotch-kicks...


How about a movie where the actors in a live radio drama start demanding changes to the script? Yes. Hell yes, I say. That's the premise of Rajio no Jikan (1997), also known as Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald. Thirteen years later, and it still seems fresher than the latest Hollywood CGI-laden 3D arglebargle. That one actor renames his character Donald McDonald because he sees a McDonald's bag is enough to make me want to watch this. That the writer is horrified when the drama's setting is moved from Atami to New York only adds to my desire to own it on DVD.

Even if every other element of this film proved to be an unmitigated disaster, I'd still want to see it. But apparently, it won three Japanese Academy Awards and was nominated for several more.


RAB said...


(And considering the last film I saw on your recommendation was Linda Linda Linda you'd better believe your word carries a lot of weight in this precinct.)

Richard Bensam said...

So did you ever see it? I did!