Kids Return is a film that was written and directed by Takeshi Kitano. The film was released in 1996. The story revolves around two Japanese teenagers who seem to lack a sense of direction in their lives. Masaru and Shinji are best of friends who have the knack of causing trouble to others. These trouble makers cut classes, make fun of their teachers and classmates, and mug for money so they can drink beer at a noodle restaurant. Their teachers were almost certain that they will achieve nothing in life.
The film depicts real life situations that are usually unnoticed. The two main characters, no matter how delinquent they are, somehow found the drive to be successful. The two of them eventually decided to follow different paths. Shinji chose to be a boxer, while Masaru joined a yakuza gang. The two of them failed in their chosen careers even though they seem to have the necessary skills. Two other characters were also feature in the film. These two characters were good students that wanted to achieve success in life. One of them wanted to make it as a comedian, while the other one got a job at a sales firm but decided to become a taxi driver instead. The latter chose to become a taxi driver because he wanted to have more money and freedom. Just like Masaru and Shinji, they also did not achieve success.
Kitano shows us that maturity and self-discipline is important to achieve success. This was the problem of the two main characters that eventually led to their failure. However, being upright and conforming to rules does not guarantee success. The four characters are still in the process of finding their place in the world. The story ended with the reunion of the two main characters. They have realized that they were the same people they used to be.
The movie tells us that failure is not the end of everything. As the saying goes, “when a door closes, a window opens.” The film was well-crafted and director has a clear vision of the youth. All its elements, from the direction to the acting, was quite remarkable. It is a great film that comes with a deep and encouraging message.