One title, Norwegian Wood, in three different forms of art – music, writing and filmography yet they all share the same themes about love, loss and letting go. ” I once had a girl, or should I say she once had me…” by The Beatles.
While the song produces beautiful melody, its lyrics offer very little value without much of a theme. The book, on the other hand, by Haruki Murakami, gives much richer with more details of a dark love triangle between three undergrad college students in Tokyo. Murakami also takes the setting outside of the busy city into a beautiful quite mountain retreat. In addition to the love drama, these college students are also struggling with changes and losses and learning how to leave their tragic past behind.
It is rather a popular book. Most of my Japanese friends have read it at some point. Norwegian Wood is relatively an easy fast pace reading, with a few sittings over the weekend you can definitely finish it.
Moving to the movie that was directed by Tran Anh Hung which I have yet to see but meaning to watch since its opening was last Friday at the Kabuki. The movie has mixed reviews, some said Tran “falls short of bringing its source material to fruition. What attempts to be light, airy, haunting, empty, and contemplative comes off as weighty, teary-eyed, and overly-dramatic. “, in contrast others think “it is a beautiful film. A master of mood and visuals, Tran proves an inspired choice. Anyone who enjoyed “The Notebook” or “Dear John” – or grew up in the 1970s – will like it.”
The song ended with a question “isn’t it good, Norwegian wood?”. I do not know about the movie but the book was more than good. It kept me grounded for a few days.