Evil Does Not Exist

In the rural alpine hamlet of Mizubiki, not far from Tokyo, Takumi and his daughter, Hana, lead a modest life gathering water, wood, and wild wasabi for the local udon restaurant. Increasingly, the townsfolk become aware of a talent agency’s plan to build an opulent glamping site nearby, offering city residents a comfortable “escape” to the snowy wilderness. When two company representatives arrive and ask for local guidance, Takumi becomes conflicted in his involvement, as it becomes clear that the project will have a pernicious impact on the community. Ryusuke Hamaguchi‘s follow up to his Academy Award®-winning Drive My Car is a foreboding fable on humanity’s mysterious, mystical relationship with nature. As sinister gunshots echo from the forest, both the locals and representatives confront their life choices and the haunting consequences they have. Evil Does Not Exist stands on the battle lines between modern civilization and the natural world, offering a perspective that’s as quietly measured as it is entrancing. In Japanese with English subtitles.  (1h 46m)

“As he’s done before, Hamaguchi gives us characters who are too complicated and richly drawn to be reduced to any one type. Yet that doesn’t explain how hauntingly different this movie feels from his other work.” – Peter Rainier, NPR

“A masterful film that invites contemplation and, in return, delivers lyrical beauty, haunting mystery, and more than a bit of unexpected terror.” – Nick Schager, The Daily Beast