A myth about lost harmony, which is always with us, though we often cannot feel it, is further developed in this film by Alexander Sokurov. The material used here is concrete and, at first sight, quite suitable for television. The whole work is an unhurried and detailed report from an old solitary house, lost in the mountains, in the village of Aska (Nara Prefecture), Japan, where an old woman, Umeno Matshueshi, lives alone. But the filmmaker’s creative task is quite contrary to the usual television information stream. Sokurov’s camera doesn’t watch this character, it doesn’t ask any questions, it doesn’t surprise her, it merely creates a poetical image out of trivial details, out of the refined simplicity of Japanese life. The woman, who remains silent throughout the whole film, sewing kimonos, cooking and eating, kindling the fire, combing her hair and giving alms, recites as a final prayer sorrowful haiku about loneliness and loss.