Naomi Kawase gives this book of cinematographical notes that covers the first 23 years of her life the appearance of an impressionist quest, made of photographs and images she shot herself in S8mm. Commingled within are a poetic assembly of recurring pictures of trees with windswept foliage, blooming flowers, lively streets and some interiors of dwellings. Renouncing the realism of synchronous sound, the account develops four impressive moments, that of the stubborn search for her parents, who left her at an early age, then that, short, allusive and cheerful, of romantic encounter. What follows is the portrayal of the joys of life caught in the day-to-day (reminiscent of the editing of Jonas Mekas). Then, at the end of the doubts evoked by her worried voice, Naomi Kawase dials the telephone number of her father, of her mother. The emotion emerges in the images, discreet and inspired metaphors, in modest tears. While the father's face appears for a moment in the film's final image, only the voice of the mother briefly expresses itself, before disappearing, most likely forever.
Jean Perret (Film from Visions du Réel 1996)