Yuki’s parents are divorcing. The nine-year-old girl’s Japanese mother has decided to leave Paris to return to her homeland, and she’s taking her daughter with her. In neo-New Wave fashion, actor/director Girardot slowly charts a kid’s acceptance of her fate: separation from her Paris home, her French father and best friend Nina. The psychological-emotional shift is captured in images filmed at kids’ eye level – little action, sparse dialogue – as Yuki’s present and future reality in Japan intertwine with a magical realist beauty. Requires patience, but not devoid of charm and substance beyond the apparent mundane nature of its storyline.
Yuki & Nina | Directed by Hippolyte Girardot, Nobuhiro Suwa (France 2009) with Noë Sampy, Arielle Moutel. Opens June 16.