The Mourning Forest (Mogari no mori) (2007)



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Movie Info

Two people dealing with loss come together in this drama from Japanese filmmaker Naomi Kawase. Machiko (Machiko Ono) is a woman who is still recovering emotionally from the death of her young son when she takes a job at a nursing home, where she helps care for the elderly and ailing residents. One of Machiko's charges is Shigeki (Shigeki Uda), a kind but frustrating man who is slipping into senility. Machiko reminds Shigeki of his late wife, while she similarly develops a filial fondness for him. For his birthday, Machiko takes Shigeki for a drive in the country, but her car breaks down and she has to go for help. When Machiko returns a few minutes later, she discovers Shigeki has run off into the nearby woods, and she has to go in and look for him. While Machiko does eventually find Shigeki, she still has a car that won't start and it's too dark to walk back to town; while Machiko tries to get Shigeki to settle down for the night, he keeps insisting on hiking deeper into the woods, looking for something he's incapable of explaining to others. Mogari no Mori (aka The Mourning Forest) received its European debut at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi


Yoichiro Saito
as Machiko's Husband
Kanako Masuda
as Shigeki's Wife
Machiko Ono
as Machiko
Shigeki Uda
as Shigeki

Critic Reviews for The Mourning Forest (Mogari no mori)

All Critics (6) | Top Critics (2)

A film marked by lovely moments but which falls short of the lyrical heights to which it aspires.

May 31, 2007 | Full Review…

Yarn about a young carer who follows an elderly patient into the forest, strives for the mythic, but ambition is undercut by its conveniently underarticulated affectations.

May 29, 2007 | Full Review…

The film is quiet, even gentle in its pacing, but has a great deal to say.

Aug 24, 2017 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Ultimately, The Mourning Forest is not so much flawed as it is unable to create a very powerful impression.

Jan 10, 2008 | Rating: 56/100 | Full Review…

Beautifully photographed, but Uda steals the show as Shigeki.

Sep 13, 2007

A sad, poetic feature about grief and loss, Naomi's uneven film requires a certain patience and understanding.

May 27, 2007 | Rating: B-

Audience Reviews for The Mourning Forest (Mogari no mori)


Kawase is trying to make a sensorial film in which little is said and we are supposed to feel in our hearts the pain that troubles the characters, but she ends up creating something terribly dull and empty that wants to look a lot more profound than it is.

Carlos Magalhães
Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

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