At the end of the press screening in Cannes, the critics unanimously hailed the director's 13th feature film, acclaimed for its subtle incisive look at the intimacy of the family scene and beyond, at Japanese society, as an example of "perfection" . For its part, the Jury expressed its praise for the film's grace, elegance, acting and the depth of the staging.
In 2013, Kore-Eda Hirokazu garnered the Jury Prize at Cannes with Like Father, Like Son,
and in 2004, Yuuya Yagira's performance in Nobody Knows earned the lead the Best Male Actor award. This therefore marks a third Cannes award for the director who, claiming both the heritage of a Mikio Naruse and the kinship of a Ken Loach, "is the crowning glory of this generation of Japanese filmmakers, in the footsteps of the great protesters: Nagisa Oshima and Shohei Imamura" (Thomas Sotinel).
In the Festival's history, this is the fifth Palme d'or awarded to a Japanese film after Gate of Hell by Teinosuke Kinugasa (Grand Prix, 1954), Kagemusha by Akira Kurosawa (1980), and The Ballad of Narayama (1983) and The Eel (1997) directed by Shohei Imamura.