Bill Nighy in Living (2022) © Film4
Bill Nighy in Living (2022) © Film4
Living, © Film4 (2022)

ACMI presents


Oliver Hermanus | UK, Japan, Sweden | 2022 | PG

The Kazuo Ishiguro-scripted remake of Akira Kurosawa’s Ikiru transports the story to 1950s London.

Really quite something: a rare remake that only augments and enriches the original.

John Nugent (Empire)

Bill Nighy stars as Mr Williams, a stoic local council bureaucrat who has always done things by the book and has made work his life. When a terminal cancer diagnosis upends his orderly, mundane existence, Williams begins to reflect on his life and the regrets he has for not taking the time to stop and live a little. A chance encounter with a stranger at a café (Tom Burke) and later a young female work colleague (Aimee Lou Wood) further his determination to embrace life and do something meaningful with the little time he has.

South African director Oliver Hermanus (Beauty, 2011) and Nobel prize-winning novelist and screenwriter Kazuo Ishiguro faithfully adapt Akira Kurosawa’s splendid film Ikiru, which itself was a loose adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich. Sticking closely to that film's inventive narrative structure, Ishiguro takes small liberties, streamlining the story somewhat and doing away with the original’s enigmatic voiceover. Its biggest adherence to Ikiru is by keeping to the film's 1950s timeframe. Opening on grainy, colour archival footage of 50s London, Hermanus and cinematographer Jamie Ramsay opt for a brighter look than Kurosawa’s darker, expressionistic use of shadows and light. Nighy brings a studied reserve to the role, all the more powerful when he finally allows himself to loosen his resolve and allow life in, and the film's moving final moments, offer a hopeful message about the legacy you leave behind.

Format: DCP
Language: English
Source: Sony Pictures
Courtesy: Sony Pictures
Duration: 102 mins


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102 mins



Contains mild themes, sexualised imagery, and infrequent coarse language


Full $9
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