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Mother (2010) (DVD Box) (Japan Version) DVD Region 2

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Mother (2010) (DVD Box) (Japan Version)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

Tokyo Love Story screenwriter Sakamoto Yuji has previously dealt with juvenile-related issues with dramas like the award-winning Watashitachi no Kyokasho and Taiyo to Yumi no Kyoshitsu. This time, he takes on the sensitive topic of child abuse and adopted children with the controversial drama Mother. Elegantly co-directed by Mizuta Nobuo (252: Signal of Life) and Naganuma Makoto (Dream Again), the somber 11-episode drama follows a woman who takes the law into her own hands by kidnapping her seven-year-old abused student and taking her as her own daughter. While award-winning actress Matsuyuki Yasuko (Suspect X) gives another quietly powerful performance, the true revelation of Mother is six-year-old Ashida Mana, who owns every single scene she's in as the adopted daughter. Both actresses left such an impression on Japanese television audiences that they were voted Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress at the Spring 2010 edition of the Nikkan Sports Drama Grand Prix.

Nao (Matsuyuki Yasuko) moved to a small town at the coast of Hokkaido to work as a bird researcher, but had to become an elementary school teacher when the facility shut down. While substituting for a class, she attracts the attention of the spunky Reina (Ashida Mana). Usually reluctant to make interpersonal attachments, the introverted Nao slowly grows concerned about Reina when it appears that Reina's mother (Ono Machiko) and her boyfriend (Ayano Gou) might be physically abusing her. After a particularly traumatic incident, Nao puts away her cold exterior and decides to take Reina away from her home by kidnapping her. Taking on the new name Tsugumi, Reina and Nao pretend to be a mother-daughter couple on an escape that takes them from Hokkaido to Tokyo. Along the way, Nao is forced to face her own childhood abandonment by her mother, as well as her broken relationship with her foster mother (Takahata Atsuko) and her younger sisters.

This DVD set comes with a set of promotional materials.

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Technical Information

Product Title: Mother (2010) (DVD Box) (Japan Version) Mother DVD Box (DVD) (日本版) Mother DVD Box (DVD) (日本版) Mother DVD−BOX DVD-BOX Mother (2010) (DVD Box) (Japan Version)
Artist Name(s): Tanaka Yuko | Sakai Wakana | Matsuyuki Yasuko | Takahata Jyunko | Ichikawa Miwako | Ono Machiko | Naganuma Makoto | Francis Remedios | Yamamoto Koji | Otoo Takuma | Kurashina Kana | Ayano Go | Mana Ashida Mana | Sakamoto Yuji 田中裕子 | 酒井若菜 | 松雪泰子 | 高畑淳子 | 市川實和子 | 尾野真千子 | Naganuma Makoto | Francis Remedios | 山本耕史 | 音尾琢真 | 倉科加奈 | 綾野剛 | 蘆田愛菜 | 坂元裕二 田中裕子 | 酒井若菜 | 松雪泰子 | Takahata Jyunko | 市川实和子 | 尾野真千子 | Naganuma Makoto | Francis Remedios | 山本耕史 | 音尾琢真 | 仓科加奈 | 绫野刚 | 芦田爱菜 | 坂元裕二 田中裕子 | 酒井若菜 | 松雪泰子 | 高畑淳子 | 市川実和子 | 尾野真千子 | 長沼誠 | Francis Remedios | 山本耕史 | 音尾琢真 | 川村陽介 | 倉科カナ | 綾野剛 | 芦田愛菜 | 千葉行利(プロデューサー) | 水田伸生(演出) | 次屋尚(プロデューサー) | ケイファクトリー(制作協力) | 田中芳樹(チーフプロデューサー) | 大倉寛子(協力プロデューサー) | 大塚英治(協力プロデューサー) | 坂元裕二 Tanaka Yuko | Sakai Wakana | Matsuyuki Yasuko | Takahata Jyunko | Ichikawa Miwako | Ono Machiko | Naganuma Makoto | Francis Remedios | Yamamoto Koji | Otoo Takuma | Kurashina Kana | Ayano Go | Mana Ashida Mana | Sakamoto Yuji
Director: Mizuta Nobuo 水田伸生 水田伸生 水田伸生 | REMEDIOS(音楽) Mizuta Nobuo
Writer: Sakamoto Yuji 坂元裕二 坂元裕二 坂元裕二 Sakamoto Yuji
Release Date: 2010-09-22
Publisher Product Code: VPBX-14913
Language: Japanese
Place of Origin: Japan
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: 2 - Japan, Europe, South Africa, Greenland and the Middle East (including Egypt) What is it?
Shipment Unit: 3 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1022852765

Product Information

[アーティスト/ キャスト]
松雪泰子 / 山本耕史 / 田中裕子 / REMEDIOS (音楽)



放送日:2010年4月14日から6月23日 日本テレビ系
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Editor's Pick of "Mother (2010) (DVD Box) (Japan Version)"

Picked By Rockman
See all this editor's picks

October 21, 2010

Mothers and daughters
Dealing with domestic abuse, generations of unresolved mother-daughter issues, and at least one plot twist with blackmail, the NTV television drama Mother is far better than it has any right to be. Television is often considered a slum for dramatic fictional stories, a land in which stories are written and made for the masses via recurring clichés, uninspired directing, and less-than-stellar production values. Exquisitely filmed and subtly touching, Mother consistently shattered these stereotypes during its 11-episode run.

While writer Sakamoto Yuji started his television writing career with urban romance dramas like Tokyo Love Story, he began to explore juvenile-related social issues in his later works Watashitachi no Kyoshitsu and Taiyo to Umi no Kyoshitsu. With Mother, Sakamoto smartly works in familial melodrama within the confines of a typical "on the run" story, rarely letting the story lose its dramatic momentum while also giving it room to expand its characters.

The opening episodes of Mother can be tough to watch: the first episode sets up the meeting between introverted kindergarten teacher Nao (Matsuyuki Yasuko) and her student Reina (Ashida Mana). The two live in a small town in Hokkaido, a perfect fit for the emotionally cold Nao, who has estranged herself from her adopted family in Tokyo. Over time, Nao begins to suspect that Reina is suffering from some kind of domestic abuse at home, which Sakamoto and director Mizuta Nobuo show very delicately without showing the ugly details. While it makes for a disturbing viewing experience, the scenes further legitimize Nao's rationale to kidnap Reina out of the situation by the end of the first episode.

Just as Mother seems to settle down on a typical "on the run" story structure that would follow Nao and Reina's adventures, Sakamoto gets to the true heart of the story in episode three with the introduction of Nao's birth mother Motsuki (Tanaka Yuko). While Nao and Reina's escape from the law continues to drive the story forward and motivates the main characters at that point, Sakamoto reveals that the true focus of the series is his story's numerous complex mother-daughter relationships. These relationships cause and resolve the characters' inner turmoil (even for Yamamoto Koji's initially slimy reporter character), making them the catalyst for each episode's emotional climax.

Despite the serial nature of many Japanese drama series, each episode is usually structured independently even in script form. Sakamoto takes advantage of this, offering an emotional climax in each episode. Even though these scenes - usually extended monologues or drawn-out separation scenes - are both staples of Japanese television dramas, directors Mizuta and Naganuma Makoto (Yasuko to Kenji) shoot them in a surprisingly subtle style that seems to belong more in theatrical films than a typical television drama. Brilliantly framed and edited, these scenes are proof that directing television is not simply following words in the script and that it can take the same amount of talent as directing theatrical films.

Of course, such scenes would be impossible to pull off without the series' uniformly strong (and predominantly female) cast. As expected, Matsuyuki is exceptionally strong as the star, effectively carrying Nao's cold personality while still making her a likeable enough character to follow. However, the true standout of the show is the six-year-old Ashida Mana as Reina. Her bright persona lends a much-needed dose of joy to the heavy emotional weight the show puts on its viewers, stealing every scene in a convincing performance that would exhaust any trained actor. As strong as all the actors are on Mother, Mana's Reina is one of the most memorable child drama characters in recent memory, and she is likely the character that everyone is guaranteed to remember.

Fortunately, Mana doesn't completely overshadow everyone else behind or in front of the camera. Thanks to the effort of the entire production, Mother is easily one of the strongest television dramas to come out of Japan in recent years. Frequent drama viewers may need time to get used to its slow pace, but those willing to immerse themselves will find a strong, touching story about redemption that is well worth the search for it. Rather than trying to break through its genre confines, the makers of Mother simply take familiar conventions of age-old genres - the family melodrama, in this case - and show us that they can still produce stories that are worth telling.

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