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Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles) DVD Region 2

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Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)
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Customer Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (3)
All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9.2 out of 10 (5)

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YesAsia Editorial Description

Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea,) was written, edited, and directed by famed director Ishii Katsuhito, whose previous two features (Shark Skin Man and Peach Hip Girl, Party 7) were celebrated for their oddball, Quentino Tarantino-esque gangster ensembles. For Cha no Aji, Ishii recruits veteran actors Asano Tadanobu (who appeared in both of Ishii's previous features) and Miura Tomokazu for a touching, odd, beautiful, but sad family comedy - a definite departure from his previous films. Cha no Ajiwas selected for screening at 2004's Cannes Film Festival, and won Best Feature at the 2004 Hawaii International Film Festival!

Cha no Aji represents Ishii's first screenplay, and its style is in strong contrast to his previous work. In this comedy, he explores the dysfunctional qualities of an average family - consisting of father, mother, teenage son, young daughter and grandfather who live together in a small village north of Tokyo. When the children's uncle from the city (Asano Tadanobu) moves in, all hell breaks loose. Grandfather Oji (Tatsuya Gashuin) is an odd-tempered eccentric, mother Yoshiko (Satomi Tezuka) wants to return to her previous job as a table cartoon illustrator, and father Noubo is a hypno-therapist who works at home. The son Hajime (Takahiro Sato) is indulging in a teenage fantasy of falling for a beautiful girl at a school, while younger daughter Sachiko has her very own set of puberty problems to deal with...

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Technical Information

Product Title: Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles) 茶之味 - Good Taste Edition (普通版) (日本版 - 英文字幕) 茶之味 - Good Taste Edition (普通版) (日本版 - 英文字幕) 茶の味 グッドテイスト・エディション(初回限定生産) Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)
Artist Name(s): Asano Tadanobu | Miura Tomokazu | Ishii Katsuhito | Tatsuya Gashuin 淺野忠信 | 三浦友和 | 石井克人 | 我修院達也 浅野忠信 | 三浦友和 | 石井克人 | 我修院达也 浅野忠信 | 三浦友和 | 石井克人 | 我修院達也 Asano Tadanobu | Miura Tomokazu | Ishii Katsuhito | Tatsuya Gashuin
Release Date: 2005-02-25
Publisher Product Code: REDV-82
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English
Country of Origin: Japan
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: 2 - Japan, Europe, South Africa, Greenland and the Middle East (including Egypt) What is it?
Publisher: Culture Publishers
Other Information: 2DVDs
Shipment Unit: 2 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1003935473

Product Information

タイトル:茶の味 グッドテイスト・エディション(初回限定生産)

山間の小さな町に暮らす春野家の人々。彼らはそれぞれ悩みを抱え悶々としていた。内気な高校生の長男・一は恋に悩み、小学校に入学したての妹・幸子は時折ふと現われる巨大な自分の分身に困惑している。母・美子は子育てが一段落したことでアニメーターに復帰しようと奮闘中。催眠治療士の父・ノブオは、そんな美子に不満な様子。東京で音楽ミキサーをやっている叔父のアヤノは元恋人に未練タラタラ、ノブオの弟で漫画家の轟木一騎は仕事に行き詰まっていた。それでも春野家の祖父・アキラはそんな家族をいつも温かく見守っていた…。

テクニカル・インフォメーション

その他の情報
備考:1枚組
2枚組特典ディスク付/特典映像:予告、特報、MTV映画特番、『茶の味めいきんぐ』、完成披露試写会ほか
日本小売価格:¥4700

Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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Professional Review of "Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)"

October 3, 2006

This professional review refers to Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) (Guttokuru BOX) (Limited Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)
From the outside looking in, certain families can look normal, if not ideal. But peel back the layers, and you'll see all the eccentricities that make a family unique. In keeping with this idea, filmmaker Katsuhito Ishii writes, directs, and edits this extended look at the various quirks that typify the seemingly ordinary Haruno family: Yoshiko (Satomi Tezuka), her husband Nobuo (Tomokazu Miura), their sixteen-year-old son, Hajime (Takahiro Sato), their six-year-old daughter, Sachiko (Maya Banno), and Grandpa (Tetsuya Gashuin). While living together in the countryside, each family member is undergoing a personal drama of sorts, although these "struggles" range from the commonplace to the downright surreal.

As the head of the household, Nobuo works as a hypnotherapist and occasionally tries out his skills on the family, while wife Yoshiko is trying her best to get back her old job as an animator. The piece she's drawing requires some outlandish action poses, and Grandpa is more than happy to oblige his services as a model - that is, when the sweet, but senile old fart isn't too busy putting a tuning fork to his ear. In typical teen drama fashion, young Hajime is smitten with Aoi (Anna Tsuchiya), his attractive new classmate, and joins the igo club just to get closer to her. However, he doesn't seem to have the courage to approach her. Little Sachiko has problems of her own, but unlike her brother's issues, they are anything but typical. To wit, she finds herself being haunted by a giant-sized doppelganger that only she can see. After overhearing a story of a similar "haunting," she becomes convinced that if she can successfully complete a full backflip on the monkey bars near her house, the gargantuan double will magically disappear. As a kid, of course, that's sound logical.

Joining the closely-knit family is the ineffably cool Uncle Ayano (Tadanobu Asano), a sound mixer who ends up crossing paths with a former girlfriend (Tomoko Nakajima) who's moved on with her life. It's an interesting subplot considering their awkward, but tender chance encounter, but overall, it's an underdeveloped storyline. Considering The Taste of Tea's already lengthy 159-minute running time, perhaps it was an element that was left on the cutting room floor. Ayano does get more to do later in the film, as he grudgingly agrees to help Nobuo's bespectacled, mushroom-topped brother (Ikki Todoroki) with a seemingly idiotic vanity project. The guy is an otaku geek who's crafted his very own song entitled "Yama Yo" ("Oh, Mountain"), a tune that is as silly as it is catchy.

There's no plot per se; Ishii depicts a collection of family experiences that join together to form a greater whole, although that description in itself is an oversimplification. The Taste of Tea is far more nuanced than that, and although there's a seeming normalcy at the heart of the film, oddness regularly abounds. The "Yama Yo" video - full of outrageous costumes, ridiculously choreographed hand gestures, and Grandpa singing backup - is a giddy delight. Similarly, a scene of Nobuo's lecherous brother getting thrashed by a petite, cutesy voiced co-worker is an oddly satisfying thrill, as is Ayano's story about being forced to take a dump in the woods as a child, only to find himself shadowed by the bloodied ghost of a murdered Yakuza. Appearing early in the film, the scene is laugh-out loud hilarious, especially considering Asano's deadpan delivery and his character's own amused confusion at his strangely comic tale. And then, of course, there's the planet-sized sunflower that goes on to devour the entire universe near the film's climax. Yeah, it's that weird.

But what's remarkable about The Taste of Tea is that all this strangeness isn't really alienating at all. If anything, rather than distance us from the proceedings, these strange moments bring the audience even closer to the characters. In exhibiting a laid back, languorous style, the film is probably too long for its own good, but having said that, the extensive time spent with this family is completely worthwhile. Amidst all this quirkiness, the film builds to a finale that is surprisingly heartwarming and triumphant. It's a strange movie to be sure, but thanks to its winning sense of humor, charming characters, and masterful use of magical realism if not outright absurdity, The Taste of Tea makes for a wholly satisfying cinematic experience. It may not suit all tastes, but when it comes to whatever Katsuhito Ishii has planned next, I'm definitely up for a refill.

Review by Calvin McMillin

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This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.

Customer Review of "Cha no Aji (The Taste of Tea) - Good Taste Edition (Normal Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)"

Average Customer Rating for this Edition: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (3)
Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9.2 out of 10 (5)

Marta
See all my reviews


February 10, 2007

This customer review refers to The Taste of Tea (DVD) (Limited Edition) (Korea Version)
1 people found this review helpful

unique vision whimsical, funny Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
A truly unique vision of a whimsical, funny and gently-demented family. The actors do a wonderful job in fleshing out the quirky characters so that they are never cartoons.

The cinematography is fascinating-- sometimes simply beautiful; other times, bizarre. And sometimes the perspectives are distorted just enough so things take on a surreal appearance but you don't exactly know why.

This a character-driven story without a whole lot of plot. If you need a complex storyline, you may be bored, but if you like stories which reveal the inner life of a creative family, this is the film to see.
Did you find this review helpful? Yes (Report This)
Travis
See all my reviews


February 4, 2007

This customer review refers to The Taste of Tea (DVD) (Limited Edition) (Korea Version)
2 people found this review helpful

Barely worth watching Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6 out of 10
I heard about this film about a year and it sounded interested. I almost went for the more expensive Japanese DVD and am glad I went with the cheap Korean one.

I wanted to like this, but I didn't, although I can't say it's bad. I can see how people would like this.

I feel that the movie is a chore to watch. Half the time you're sitting around watching characters go about their everyday lives. This is no big deal I guess, but perhaps they should have a point to all this? I have a lot of patience and don't need to be constantly entertained. Some of my favorite films are those that are as entertaining as watching paint dry!

The only thing this movie has going for it is the nice cinemtography and the "quirky" characters. That doesn't make a good film.

I enjoyed very little of this film, but I will admit that I found several scenes quite funny.

Then towards the end they throw in some stuff to make the film seem to have some sort of meaning and to lead you to believe you just viewed a good movie. Nice try.

If you want a similar film that's funny, entertaining and just plain fun to watch, check out "Hotel Hibiscus". Unfortunately that film was pretty much ignored by everyone.
Did you find this review helpful? Yes (Report This)
Kat
See all my reviews


February 12, 2006

2 people found this review helpful

I love this movie! Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
I am still thinking about all the likable and quirky
characters in this movie long after it's over.
The teenage boy and young girl are great, as are
the rest of very talented cast. Of course, Asano
Tadanobu is always fine.
I also love the title of "Tea", a perfect mataphor.
The director is so unbelievably creative and clever.
Did you find this review helpful? Yes (Report This)
Kat
See all my reviews


February 7, 2006

2 people found this review helpful

I love this movie! Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
Like many Japanese films, it's visually astonishingly
beautiful. The movie is quirky,funny, real,
fantastical and sad. At the same time, I find it
deeply moving. There are so many human stories weaved
together. The very very young actress and the
teenager are especially impressive. The rest of cast
are all fine. I love this movie and its title. Tea
is such an appropriate metaphor!
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flood damage
See all my reviews


September 6, 2005

2 people found this review helpful

Best film of the year, no contest Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
I caught this gem at a film festival in San Francisco. It is by far the best film I've seen all year.

It is tender and hilarious at the same time. You will not walk away from this film without feeling you have been profoundly changed.
Did you find this review helpful? Yes (Report This)
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