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Sunk into the Womb

Director: Takaomi OGATA

Genre: True Story / Murder / Child Abuse / Drama

[2013 / Color / HD / Stereo / 95 min. / Japanese with English subtitles]

[Festival Record]

Official Selection: Nippon Connection 2014


Yukiko waits at home for her husband Toshiya, who hasn't come home although it is the morning of their promised picnic. Her daughter Sachi and her son Sora wait eagerly for their father, and Yukiko urges them to wait just a little longer. Yukiko tries to be a good mother, tending to housework and raising her children every day by herself. However, she begins to sense that Toshiya having an affair with another woman, and when he comes home for the first time in a many days, she tries to rekindle his love. Toshiya turns her down, however, and tells her that he is leaving her.

After they are divorced, Yukiko begins living with her two children in a new apartment.Since she married young and has no education or work experience, she is forced to raise her children while trying to balance working long hours at part time jobs with studying for medical certification. However, because of monetary constraints and the demands of childrearing, she takes her friend’s advice and begins working in a red-light district at night. More and more she is forced to work late into the night, which makes it difficult for her to spend time on housework or childrearing. Yukiko slowly begins to feel estranged from her daughter Sachi as she tries to amuse her mother after returning late in the night. She becomes obsessed with a host club that she started going as an escape from her loneliness and the difficulty of raising children.

One day, Yukiko leaves home after making a meal for her children, running away with a man she just started seeing without thinking of return home. The young children, unable to even prepare their own meals, are left alone in a single room in their dark, silent apartment. Yuki cradles Sora as he cries, trying to feed him giving her food even if she was hungry, but before his second birthday, Sora died out of hunger. Sachi is now completely alone. She continues to wait for her mother to return, eating anything she can find, from leftover food, to seasonings, to uncooked rice.

One month after leaving her children, Yukiko suddenly returns home. The feeble Yuki is lying down leaning against Sora, but when she realizes her mother is home, she runs and embraces her, saying, "Mom, you’re so late..." Looking across the room covered in rotting garbage, Yukiko becomes speechless as she realizes the weight of her sin. She washes Sora's body infested with maggots, throws away trashes in the room, and then kills Sachi in the bathtub, who had survived awaiting her return. Yukiko then begins to lash out at herself, scarring her own genitals. As she does so, it is as if she is punishing herself, wiping the slate clean even the new life that she now carries in her womb.



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