Evil Does Not Exist Review

Cast: Hitoshi Omika, Ryô Nishikawa, Ryûji Kosaka, Ayaka Shibutani, Hazuki Kikuchi, Hiroyuki Miura, Yoshinori Miyata, Taijirô Tamura, Yûto Torii

Genre: Drama

Director: Ryûsuke Hamaguchi

In Cinemas: 5th April 2024


“Evil Does Not Exist” is A Cinematic Ode to Nature and Morality. Director Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s latest offering, set against the serene backdrop of Mizubiki Village near Tokyo, is a contemplative exploration of humanity’s relationship with nature and the moral complexities of corporate intrusion. “Evil Does Not Exist,” by the acclaimed director of “Drive My Car,” is a mesmerising tapestry of imagery, emotion, and ethical quandaries that leaves a lasting impression on its audience. At its core, the film follows Takumi (portrayed with nuance by newcomer Hitoshi Omika), a humble villager living in harmony with his daughter Hana amidst the untouched beauty of their surroundings.

Their tranquil existence is disrupted when a Tokyo-based company unveils plans to construct a nearby glamping site, threatening the delicate ecological balance and traditional way of life that Takumi and his fellow villagers cherish. What unfolds is a thought-provoking narrative transcending the simplistic dichotomy of nature versus capitalism. While the initial conflict may seem straightforward, Hamaguchi deftly navigates the grey areas of morality and human nature. Through the lens of Takumi’s journey, the audience is confronted with questions of identity, responsibility, and the consequences of progress. The film’s standout scene occurs during a tense town meeting, where the true motivations of the company representatives are laid bare.


In a masterful display of storytelling, Hamaguchi exposes the insidious nature of corporate greed while simultaneously humanising the individuals perpetuating it. The juxtaposition of Takumi’s quiet resolve with the inner turmoil of the PR agents forces viewers to confront their own biases and preconceptions. Hamaguchi’s directorial choices further enhance the film’s thematic depth. Long, lingering shots of the natural landscape evoke a sense of reverence for the beauty surrounding us, while subtle camera movements mirror the ebb and flow of the narrative. The decision to attach the camera to Takumi’s rear bumper during a pivotal moment immerses the audience in his perspective and serves as a poignant metaphor for the journey ahead.


What sets ” Evil Does Not Exist ” apart from traditional cinema is its refusal to provide easy answers. Instead of neatly tying up loose ends, Hamaguchi invites viewers to grapple with the complexities of the human experience. Just as the gentle current of a stream carries us along its path, the film meanders through moments of introspection and revelation, leaving an indelible mark on those who dare to dive beneath the surface. At its heart, ” Evil Does Not Exist ” is a meditation on the interconnectedness of all living things. Takumi’s unwavering commitment to protecting his home and family reminds us of our shared responsibility to safeguard the natural world for future generations.


It is a rallying cry for empathy, compassion, and a renewed sense of stewardship in an increasingly chaotic world. In conclusion, ” Evil Does Not Exist” is a masterpiece transcending language and cultural barriers. Its breathtaking visuals, profound storytelling, and thought-provoking themes cement Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s status as one of cinema’s most visionary auteurs. As the credits roll and the echoes of the film’s message linger, one cannot help but be moved by the timeless wisdom in its waters.

Overall: 10/10


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