i like nara's work a lot. i just enjoy it. while questionable in the long history of art, its fun and for me thats enough. so when i saw this documentary i was surprised and i knew i wanted to see it. i had expectations then, which might cloud my judgement.
the truth is though that while this might be an amazing introduction, having already known his work there is not much to gain here. thats unfortunate. and considering the extended access the filmmakers had to nara, its a missed opportunity.
much of the film follow nara around to this and that place. its hard to gather why we need to see these moments. sure its interesting to see the korean's who treat him as a rock star and follow him as a fan club. that is in fact unusual enough to dignify seeing. but, as is shown during that segment, when asked about how he comes up with his work he replies "i don't know". that is true too often of just about every thing he says related directly to the work. we do get to see the process of a painting come into being; which is invaluable evidence. we get to see how a large project is imagined and followed through. but it continues to be short on any thought process, beyond extended segments of thinking and coy shy interactions.
worse since nara himself offers little, one should expect then some outside criticism or essay. there is none. exactly none.
at 90 minutes this gets a bit tedious. i enjoyed seeing nara and i did enjoy watching the film, but i could neither recommend it nor expect to watch it again. theres no reason to.
and an extra note: the "extras" on the dvd include exactly nothing but the trailers to other films in the series. that is not what i'd call "extras"