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Ikigai (Joy of Life)

Emily Ishikawa’s documentary explores the silent language of music that binds her with her father.


Emily Ishikawa’s poignant documentary offers an intimate exploration of familial bonds through the lens of shared musical passion. The film tenderly unravels the intricate threads of the relationship between Emily and her father, Akira Ishikawa, shedding light on the barriers of communication that have persisted between them. Both introverted souls, their difficulty in expressing emotions with words finds a profound counterbalance in their shared love for music.

The narrative unfolds gracefully, weaving together still images, home videos, and a heartfelt sit-down conversation with Akira. Emily skillfully delves into her father’s musical history in Japan, offering viewers a glimpse into the serendipitous intersection of Akira’s musical journey and his eventual meeting with Emily’s mother. The film becomes a celebration of the transformative power of music to transcend language and foster connections.

Yassin Nour’s commendable cinematography captures the emotional nuances, allowing the audience to immerse themselves in the warmth and nostalgia that emanate from the screen. This documentary stands as a beautifully crafted ode to the universality of music, a touching and endearing tale that underscores the profound impact of shared passions in forging familial ties.

Ikigai (Joy of Life)


Runtime: 11 min

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