A hit at last year's Cleveland International Film Festival, Cherry Blossoms comes to the Cleveland Museum of Art for showing tonight at 76:30 and at 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 13. Here is our review of the film.
Cherry Blossoms (Germany/France, 2008) Winner of the audience award when it showed recently at the Cleveland International Film Festival, Doris Dörrie’s film is a touching story about Trudi (Hannelore Elsner) and Rudi (Elmar Wepper), an elderly Bavarian couple who try to reconnect with their children. They first visit two of their kids, now grown up, in Berlin, but when it’s apparent they’re not welcome, they take a trip to the Baltic Sea. When Trudi unexpectedly dies, Rudi has to go back home by himself. He can’t adjust to life without his wife, so he goes to Tokyo to see his son. That doesn’t go so well either, but after he meets a young homeless Japanese girl, he suddenly gets in touch with his spiritual side. The movie, a loose retelling of the 1953 film Tokyo Story, has compassion at its core and is beautifullly shot, but it often opts for sentimental crutches (several heavy-handed metaphors) that just seem forced. ** 1/2