Review: ‘Household X’

Emotionally immature pic thinks it's saying something profound about its obsessive-compulsive protag.

A family of three barely communicate and then go to pieces in Koki Yoshida’s bloodless drama “Household X.” Lensed with a fondness for backs of heads and lost profiles that have no thematic purpose, this emotionally immature pic thinks it’s saying something profound about its obsessive-compulsive protag, but the lead is just a run-down Stepford wife, a droopy automaton auds won’t be able to connect with emotionally. With nothing new to add to a well-worn subject, Yoshida’s sophomore feature will barely leave a mark on the fest map.

The Hashimotos live together in a featureless Tokyo suburb, but they could be on separate planets. Michiko (Kaho Minami) is a housewife, obsessively cleaning, arranging and preparing meals for family members who never turn up at regular hours. Husband Kenichi (Tomorowo Taguchi) wanders through the house and his office with a glassy-eyed stare, while son Hiroaki (Tomohiro Kaku) is sullen and prickly. One can’t say Michiko is unraveling since there’s nothing left on the spool; when she does crack, it’s impossible to muster any feeling. Apparently Yoshida (“Symptom X”) didn’t let d.p. Takayuki Shida use a tripod.

Household X



A Pia Film Festival presentation of a PFF Partners, PIA Corp., Tokyo Broadcasting System, Imagica, Avex Entertainment, Usen, Little More production. (International sales: Pia Film Festival, Tokyo.) Produced by Mayumi Amano. Directed, written by Koki Yoshida.


Camera (color, 16mm-to-35mm), Takayuki Shida; editors, Ryo Hayano, Yoshida; music, Yuko Sebu; production designer, Shimpei Inoue. Reviewed at Berlin Film Festival (Forum), Feb. 14, 2011. Running time: 88 MIN.


Kaho Minami, Tomorowo Taguchi, Tomohiro Kaku, Mariko Tsutsui, Jun Murakami, Yoshiyuki Morishita.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety