I thought I lost my DVD copy of Millenium Actress (2001, Japan). But Volts found it among the pile of old VCDs, thanks to him. This is one of the few films I’m not tired of watching over and over.
The story is about Genya Tachibana who is shooting a documentary about a former actress, Chiyoko Fujiwara. Together with his cameraman, they located Chiyoko and Genya returned a key which the actress lost 30 years ago.
Chiyoko told them that when she was still a teenager, a stranger (who was a painter and revolutionary rebel) whom she helped escape from the authorities, gave that key. They promised each other that they will meet someday. Chiyoko held on that promise and the only way for her to track down the stranger is to become an actress.
Present reality and Chiyoko’s storytelling became alternately seamless as scenes from Chiyoko’s movies and life story become one. At the end, Genya realized that Chiyoko was just following a shadow which is summed up by her last line…”after all, it was the chase that I loved.”
Most of us follow a dream, even if it just a shadow, an idea. Yet we believe it exists somewhere out there and hope to reach it soon. It is the dream that fuels our passion to pursue a goal, an unreachable star, perhaps.