Canary (2008)

Genres - Drama  |   Sub-Genres - Childhood Drama, Psychological Drama  |   Release Date - Jul 25, 2008 (USA - Limited)  |   Run Time - 132 min.  |   Countries - Japan  |   MPAA Rating - NR
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Inspired by the deadly sarin gas attacks on a Tokyo subway back in 1995, director Akihiko Shiota's introspective psychological drama follows the journey of a young boy attempting to reconnect with his estranged mother and sister after a horrific terrorist attack. The Nirvana cult has committed an unspeakable act, and now that the group has been disbanded, its child members are being taken in by welfare services. Twelve-year-old Koichi (Hoshi Ishida) is just such a child. His father was a member of the Nirvana cult, and now Koichi has no one to turn to. Enraged and confused at being made a faceless ward of the state, Koichi flees from welfare services in an attempt to track down his sister, who has recently moved to Tokyo with their grandfather. Along the way, Koichi crosses paths with pretty runaway Yuki (Mitsuki Tanimura), who survives on the streets by selling her body. Though the two children are initially able to connect over the fact that they have both lost one parent and suffered terrible mistreatment at the hands of the other, Yuki's position in life gives her a kind of tentative erotic power, while Koichi's mind remains irreparably damaged due to the months of physical and mental intimidation he was forced to endure while living with the Nirvana cult. Together, these two forgotten children struggle to find their way in a society in which the weak are exploited and the vulnerable left to fend for themselves.

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Keywords

boy, cult, search