This is a powerful movie, but in an unconventional way. The movie has avery quiet sense of power to it, which is unexpected and beautiful. Themovie moves at a very slow pace. It crawls along over 141 minutes. Idefiantly yawned a few times in this one. But the journey really isworth it. While you're in the theater you wish that they would haveedited more, but after it's over you agree that it all had to be thereto create the feeling of the film. Although the pace is slow, it'sperfectly spaced moving steadily forward.
Koreeda is a fabulous director. He practices a lot of restraint,letting the kids tell the story, not the words or the camera. He takeshis time unfolding his movie, making sure each small detail has beendealt with. The gradually pace in which the movie becomes tragic issomething most directors wouldn't dare do. Seeing every day in the lifeof four children as their lives slowly fall apart is daring, it's mucheasier to just jump down the road a little and cover it with somedialogue. Koreeda never takes the easier road, it's incredible.
I think that some of the most difficult movie making involves children.When you put children in the leading roles of films you run a hugerisk. It's not just the risk of finding a good child actor which isincredibly hard to find, but it's equally as difficult to write forchildren. Screenwriters have a hard time saying things the way childrenwould. Nobody Knows succeeds all around. The acting here is so goodthat it has one numerous awards, including the coveted Cannes BestActor awards to its young star. But the great acting doesn't end here.Each of the four children is equally capable actors, which actuallysays more about the director than the actors. This thoroughly impressedme. This is a rare case where you see life strictly though the eyes ofchildren successfully.