As the title suggests, the documentary/fiction hybrid movie The Work and Days (of Tayoko Shiojiri in the Shiotani Basin) examines labor and the passage of time. Set over the course of 5 seasons in a mountain village close to Kyoto, it makes solely fleeting concessions to anthropocentrism. That isn’t to say there aren’t characters or story arcs — there are, the movie simply forgoes exposition and asks the viewers to concentrate and choose up on what they’ll because it goes. Administrators C.W. Winter and Anders Edström imagine that the characters’ environment, their furnishings and décor, even the look and sound of their surroundings can all inform the viewer extra about their neighborhood than any close-up ever may.
Certainly, there are a handful of moments the place the display screen goes black for a couple of minutes, forcing the viewers to concentrate on the sounds of the world — birds and crickets generally, vehicles and different mechanical sounds at others. There are additionally a number of extended dialogue-free sequences, some depicting agricultural labor in lengthy takes and others extra carefully resembling Ozu’s flavorful “pillow shots.” Winter and Edström labored carefully with the neighborhood (which incorporates Edström’s in-laws, who play themselves) to make the movie over the course of 14 months. That dedication is mirrored in the eight-hour runtime, which captures each the rhythm and really feel of every day life and rural Japan’s continued environmental desecration by urbanization way more actually than it may with a extra standard size.