The Empty Hands Review

During my experience with the Hawaiʻi International Film Festival, I was able to encounter an experimental film. I am not personally fond of this type of film genre because I usually like to watch films that have a specific plot and this film kind of went all over the place with its story. To give you a better idea of the film, it is about a women named Mari Hirakawa who recently claimed half the rights to the apartment she and her father owned before he passed away. Because of her father’s will she only claimed a lesser half of the apartment while another person claimed the greater half. The other person being a former Karate student of Mari’s father. Throughout the film we both see them clash with one another in trying to fight for the rights to the apartment. And the solution to their problem was Karate.

Before watching this film, I was expecting to watch a film about a women who is fighting over the apartment with another Karate practitioner. Watching her struggle in accomplishing her goal and grow as she draws closer to achieving it. I did get that part from the film, but it is unfortunately blinded by the rest of the film that I wasn’t entirely satisfied with. The film like I said goes all over the place and does things arbitrarily. In the beginning I had the idea the film was a drama which is the main theme for the film, but then it kind of went to many different directions as the film went on. It tried to experiment with other themes such as comedy and romance which is fine if they don’t try to clash with the other themes. It almost seems like I am watching 3 different films, not catching much of the main story. But by the time I got near the end that’s when I figured that the film was experimental due to it’s interesting visuals.

Overall, the film isn’t entirely bad. It had some extremely well done cinematography which I believe really pulled the film out of the gutter. And it did have some moments that made me smile and put me on the edge of my seat. I would probably give this film a solid 6.5 out of 10. But I think anyone should still give this film a try but I don’t think you should expect too much out of it.

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