The Clone Returns Home (Nakajima, 2008)

The Clone Returns Home (Kanji Nakajima, 2008)

Normally when reviewing movies, I try to stay away from comparisons to other films or filmmakers that most of my readers have probably not seen. However, today I have to make an exception. The Clone Returns Home is a page right out of Andrei Tarkovsky’s book. Nakajima mixes science fiction with spirituality, shoots both destroyed and naturally beautiful land, and sprinkles in a bit of the abstract, and I could not stop thinking about how similar it was to many Tarkovsky films.

The film is about a young adult haunted by a childhood trauma that leaves him feeling responsible for his brother’s death. After the protagonist himself is killed in an accident, he is cloned to restore his life. Plot aside, this film is more about memory and the soul. The main character’s clone stumbles about, lost, and still haunted by his childhood. Though he comes across several desolated settings, each one of them is poetically beautiful. And though large portions of the film are without dialogue, much is said just by the expressions on his face and the actions he takes. The soul aspect of the film is treated somewhat unsubtley, but I still found it interesting and even emotional. This was a nice little hidden gem of a movie.  8.5/10


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