Veteran Japanese actress Sayuri Yoshinaga completes her thematically connected “Northern Trilogy” with a sweeping and at times experimental melodrama in which an ageing war widow wrestles with senility and reconnects with her estranged son. Filmed over seven years, Sakura Guardian in the North boasts stunning vistas of the countryside of Hokkaido, the northernmost of Japan’s four main islands, but the narrative, which spans three decades, proves icily unengaging.
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