What if one day your perfect family was turned topsy-turvy when you discover your five year old son is not yours? In the movie, “ Like Father Like Son, “ from writer and director Hirokazu Koreeda, brings a parent’s worst nightmare to life. Two families must come to accepting this tragic error as their sons switched at birth after being conceived at the hospital. Now they must decide whether to choose nurturing over one’s own blood. Can both families willingly change their son of five years in just six months? Will this enormous ordeal break both families to shreds or will their love for one another overcome this obstacle and bring the families together as one. Available now on DVD.
The story opens in a modest Japanese family apartment, Ryota Noromiya and his wife, Midori, played by Masaharu Fukuyama and Machiko Ono, are celebrating their son, Keita, fifth birthday. Ryota, a stern and successful architect and father, provides the best education and music teachers money can buy. He spends little time with the family while Midori, Keita’s mother, spend as much time with him as she can. Midori gets a phone call from the hospital and is asked to meet another family whose son was also born on the same day and time. As the two families meet in a large conference room, all are shocked to discover their sons were switched five years ago by a disgruntled nurse during their hospital visit. Coping with rage and betrayal, both families agree to slowly have conjugal visits until enough time is past to acclimate the boys, then break all ties from one another. Both mothers, Midori and Yukari, played by Yoko Maki, suffer the most as the years caring for each other son’s has made them emotionally attached. As the weeks pass, Keita and Rysusei, played by Shogen Hwang, become good friends and enjoy playing and sleepovers together until the visits end.
I found this movie very emotionally captivating and tugs at your parental heart-strings. The character Ryota, gives off this Samurai persona of an unaffectionate father whose issues with his own father’s betrayal from his natural mother slowly begins to surface near the end. Both mothers characters personal affections for each other’s sons jumps out to audiences. Though both have their own way of nurturing. The biggest surprise was Yudai Saiki, played by Riri Furanki, a father of three portrays a fun-loving blue collar father who enjoys spending time with his children than working. A great movie to watch with the family and subtitles are displayed throughout the film. Produced by Amuse, Fuji Television Network and GAGA and distributed by IFC Entertainment. Recommend this highly to watch, give it 9 out of 10.
That’s my story and I am sticking to it. Reporting for Examiner.com, I am Brian A. Madrid.
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