NORWEGIAN WOOD
PUTTING CONTEMPORARY LITERATURE INTO THE CINEMA

‘Norwegian Wood’, written by Haruki Murakami, is a love story filled with tension, silence and melancholy. Since its publication in 1987, its accumulated sales are now over 10,000,000 and the longest-standing number one best-seller in the history of Japanese contemporary literature. Murakami’s forte is modern day loneliness, confusion and sadness. His simple sentences often carry much heavier meaning between the lines. Twenty-three years later, French Vietnamese director Trần Anh Hùng is now bringing it to the big screen.

The story is set in the 1960s, main character Toru Watanabe (plays by Kenichi Matsuyama) finds himself in a relationship with two girls ─ the quiet and clinically disturbed Naoko (plays by Rinko Kikuchi) and happy-go-lucky Midori (plays by Kiko Mizuhara). Toru is fixated by the former’s mystery, and yet finds himself irresistible to the latter’s straight-up directness. After the aftermath of his best friend’s death, he finally moves on.

Film director Trần Anh Hùng was previously awarded Venice Film Festival for ‘Cyclo’ in 1995. Jonny Greenwood, Radiohead’s guitarist, is responsible for the original soundtrack of Norwegian Woods. To describe the film as ‘much anticipated’ would be an understatement..

Text: Vincent Lau
Translation: dilettante
Update: 24 Dec 2010

Director: Trần Anh Hùng
Cast: Kenichi Matsuyama, Rinko Kikuchi, Kiko Mizuhara
Release Date: 30 Dec 2010
norway-mori.com

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