Japanese film Drive my car (2021) won the award for Best Non-English Language Film at the 79th Golden Globe Awards on January 10. The last time a Japanese film won a Golden Globe was in 1960 – 62 years ago – when director Kon Ichikawa Strange obsession (1959) won the award.
The film is based on a short novel by Haruki Murakami titled Men without women (2014), and it’s directed by Ryusuke Hamaguchi, 43.
The story is about a stage actor, played by the popular Hidetoshi Nishijima, who is tormented by grief over the sudden death of his wife, and how he overcomes it. He meets Misaki, played by actress Toko Miura, and through the device of a road trip, the film explores their interaction.
The film gained attention in Japan due to the popularity of lead actor Nishijima, who has played roles in famous films and TV series, such as NHK Okaeri Mone (2021).
The film won the award for best screenplay at the 74th Cannes Film Festival in July 2021, the first such award given to a Japanese film. It also won four awards in the United States – Best Picture, Director, Screenplay, and Actor – at the 56th National Society of Film Critics Awards for 2021, announced on January 9, 2022.
In the past, director Hamaguchi has accumulated many accolades. In March 2021, he received the Silver Bear Jury Grand Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival for Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy. The director was also a co-writer of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s film. The wife of a spy (2020), for which Kurosawa received the Silver Lion for Best Director for this film at the 77th Venice Film Festival.
This year’s Golden Globe Awards took place without spectators or a live television broadcast, and the winners were primarily announced on the host’s website.
The Oscars, more commonly known as the Oscars, will take place on March 27. Drive my car will compete in the International Feature Film category, and expectations for this film to perform well are high in Japan.
RELATED: Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s “Drive My Car” wins the Best Screenplay Award at the Cannes Film Festival
Author: Arielle Busetto