Actors: Bill Murray, Scarlett Johannson, Giovanni Ribisi
|Review Summary and Plot Commentary about Lost in Translation|
|A famous American actor is filming a string of commercials in Japan at the request of his film studio/representative.
As the film gets started, we see that Bill Murray seems to be there just to earn some money, nothing more. Shooting ads for a Japanese liquor company is just the vehicle, and he seems to be quite a popular actor. We see him as a caring father and husband who is somewhat estranged from his family, wife and kids. In the middle of all his long distance communications with his wife, in steps Scarlett Johansson. She is a good looking blond, recently married, who shares late night visits with Murray to the top-of-the-hotel bar. She recognizes him and says hi.
It takes a long time for amorous behavior to start and that is eventually followed by a visit to a private party and to a country home, by views of studio and filming settings, and other things that seem to be there mainly to fill time, perhaps improve on watching the movie.
Loneliness seems to be the only underlying theme for this movie. In my opinion, the only reason why it was set in Japan was to give the sense of a foreign film which would make it more appealing to the movie going crowd.
--Carlos M. Vazquez, Resident Scholar
|A young female character (Johansson) is stuck with little or nothing to do in Japan while her husband works. She strikes a friendship with an older married actor (Murray), who is doing a commercial shoot for a few days. The two spend time together and develop a non-sexual but very close relationship.
--Karen Kay, Resident Scholar
|An actor is spending time in Japan doing commercials away from his family. Meanwhile a young married woman, who is trying to find herself, is vacationing in Japan while her husband his working. These two depressed individuals, with a large age difference, meet and soon fall in love. As their relationship deepens they become happier.
--Jack Bauer, Resident Scholar
|Bill Murray has been known to play obnoxious characters in films like Ghostbusters, and Groundhog Day, but in this nice comedy, he plays a sweet character. In Murray's best performance ever, he plays Bob Harris, a actor from the Seventies paid to go to Tokyo and film advertisements for Santory whiskey. In another career best, Scarlett Johansson plays Charlotte, a recent Harvard in Tokyo with her workaholic photographer husband. The two are lonely in their hotel rooms every day, and when they meet at the bar one night, they form a special bond.
Director/writer/producer Sofia Coppola does a good job at not making a predictable move, and not making Bob and Charlotte's relationship sexual. The daughter of Francis Ford directs with ease, and writes an intriguing script, dispite being a bit too slow. Coppola, Murray, and Johansson combined create a film that although won't be as memorable as the director's father's Best Picture winners, is still an interesting comedy.
--Estefan Ellison, Resident Scholar
|Modern day Tokyo finds two Americans brought together by business and insomnia. Bob Harris is a former 70's film actor, reluctantly promoting Japanese Whiskey for big bucks. Charlotte is the young married wife of a rock band photographer. Distanced by age but alike in soul searching, the two bond while escaping boredom and loneliness in the nightlife of Tokyo. A road trip turned comedy romance.
--john watson, Resident Scholar
|Bob Harris (Murray) is a tired, slightly over-the-hill American movie star who comes to Tokyo to film a series of Suntory vodka ads for Japanese television. He's been married 25 years and things are uneasy with his wife and family back home. In the same hotel where Bob is lodged there is a young American girl, Charlotte (Johansson), who is newly married and has nothing to do while her photographer hubby (Ribisi) is away much of the time working. The two, at very loose ends and nonplused by the swirling and high-tech Japanese culture around them, are slowly drawn into an unlikely friendship. Writer-director Sofia Coppola presents a sweet, measured, un-startling 2003 tale that will strike many Americans as aimless and slow, but it's a lovely and delicate account, and Murray does a memorably muted acting job.
--David Loftus, Resident Scholar
| Scarlett Johannsen is an American newlywed stranded in Japan as her rock-band-photographer husband is working all day. The stars meet in the hotel bar, and soon a sensitive, and "there's-something-more" friendship develops, but because this isn't typical Hollywood, they don't immediately jump into bed to express their attraction.
--Cheney, Resident Scholar
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|Analysis of Lost in Translation|
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Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Time/era of movie:
- present (2000-2010)
Kind of romance:
- inconveniently married while playing footsy
Story of city/rural life?
- Big City
- visiting a different culture
Culture of surrounding area:
- much older/younger
Is this an ordinary person caught up in events?
- brunette (Brown)
- (man) short/standard straight
- (man) average
Events of movie makes character more...
- White (American)
How sensitive is this character?
- sensitive to others' feelings
- middling sensitive to others' feelings
Sense of humor?
- Strong but gentle sense of humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- average physique
Secondary Main Character
- (woman) medium/shoulderlgn straight
- (woman) ample bosom & buttocks
- very tight clothes
How much in movie?
- White (American)
- general circumstances
Accounts of torture and death?
- no torture/death
Movie makes you feel...
Sex/nudity in movie?
What kind of sex:
- vague references only
- seeing breasts
- Occasional swearing
If lots of song/dance...
- lot of singing
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).