Review of 'Millennium Actress (Sennen joyû)'

millennium-actress.jpg As a film studio is being demolished, it's most famous star the retired and reclusive Chiyoko Fujiwara (voiced by Miyoko Shôji, by Fumiko Orikasa as a young child and Mami Koyama as a young adult) is interviewed about her life and career by television interviewer Genya Tachibana (voiced by Shôzô Îzuka). He learns of her life-long search for a man she met only briefly as he fled from the police. Her search followed her through the films she starred in and the countries they took her to. As she tells her story the interviewer and cameraman (voiced by Masaya Onosaka) are drawn in…

Another amazing film from Satoshi Kon that manages to blur the lines between fantasy and reality though here the story is quite clear and the ending not coming too much of a surprise. The animation is superb with the film (typical for Kon) moves along at break-neck speed with a soundtrack to match from Susumu Hirasawa who created the soundtracks for other Kon works including Paprika and television series “Paranoia Agent”. The thin plot is mainly an excuse to tell a series of stories based on Fujiwara's life as we skip through the centuries from feudal Japan up to the present day. It is a whole lot of fun and you can't help but laugh as long-time fan Tachibana is drawn in with the bemused cameraman commenting wryly on the proceedings.

Manic and wonderful modern Japanese animation from a master with an amazing soundtrack to match.

Rating: “I have absolutely no complaints”

Review Date: 2020-03-08

Directed by: Satoshi Kon

Studio: Bandai Visual Company

Year: 2001

Length: 87 minutes

Genre: Japanese Animation

Other reviewed films by Satoshi Kon:

Other reviewed films by Satoshi Kon and Shôgo Furuya: