Monday, March 20, 2006


Gaijin 2: Love Me As I Am

Gaijin 2: Love Me As I Am I didn't see the first Brazilian film "Gaijin, a Brazilian Odyssey," nor did I know what Gaijin means before I went to this screening. I was pleasantly surprised by this Brazilian sequel "Gaijin 2: Love Me As I Am" (Gaijin - Ama-me Como Sou). Although it was really unfortunate that there was a mixed-up with the prints for this film, so they actually played VHS tape (yes, you heard that right!!!) of this film on the big screen. Definitely the image quality is not very good but luckily the quality of the film makes up for it.

"Gaijin" means foreigners in Japanese. "Gaijin 2: Love Me As I Am" tells an unforgettable story about Japanese immigrants in Brazil, covering several decades and four generations.

In 1908, Titoe came to Brazil from Japan, but she never thought that she would not return to Japan until she already has her great grand children. Over the years, they struggled to survive the war and the environment, to gain acceptance, to hold on to the community and Japanese heritage, to cope with the culture clash, and to overcome the prejudice toward "Gaijin." By the third generation, Titoe 's granddaughter Maria crossed the racial line and married to a Brazilian man Gabriel. The landscape begins to change because now Gabriel becomes the one who is trying to gain acceptance by the Japanese family and becomes a "gaijin."

What makes this film's theme is so universal is that the story is not just about Japanese immigrants in Brazil, every ethnic group of immigrants can relate to those character's experiences with their own journey in a foreign land. I really enjoy Titoe's character and the performance of that 83 years old actress who is incredibly funny and moving.

My rating: 8 out of 10.

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