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Film Review: What a Wonderful Family! 3: My Wife, My Life. (2018) - Japan

Andrew Chan What a Wonderful Family! 3: My Wife Yoji Yamada Yui Natsukawa

What a Wonderful Family! 3: My Wife, My Life. (2018) - Japan

Reviewed by Andrew Chan (FCCA)

Veteran Japanese director Yoji Yamada simply does it again in the highly successful “Wonderful Family” series, now well into the third film. It’s more of the same and it’s precisely what is needed and required. The audience have grown to love the characters from the grumpy old grandpa, the lively grandma, the unappreciated housewife, hardworking businessman to the young couple, this film portrays precisely how modern family works and all the fun that goes with it. As much as we enjoy the ride, the emotions and engagement factor continues to be crucial as we relate to the characters and their happenings. In doing so, Yamada have once again created again masterpiece that leave us wanting more.

The third film takes us on a journey to focus on Fumie (played by the graceful Yui Natsukawa), housewife of the older son and hardworking businessman (played by the stoic Masahiko Nishimura). Under appreciated and on the brink of a possible disconnect between the two, the robbery of “her secret egg nest” acts as a catalyst to what is to unfolds. Everyone of the cast contributes to maximum effect and the result is an ensemble cast that have so much chemistry that it feels like a real family gathering to get through one problem after another.

All in all, this is easy another fantastic entry into master Yoji Yamada’s long and iconic career and at 86 years of age, he is showing no signs of ever slowing down. Much like Woody Allen and Clint Eastwood, they get better with age and change with the times, displaying clear messages about modern family dynamics, changing roles of female, importance of appreciation of one another. Perhaps, the best line comes in the form of “I just cannot live without you” and it’s works like magic. Well done Yoji Yamada!

I rated it 8/10

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