The “you choose one week, I choose one week” movie date policy is a recipe for disaster in most relationships. The rotation between senseless (but entertaining) bloodbaths and diabetes-inducing romantic comedies is enough to turn any rosy-red love an unhealthy shade of charcoal. While it is unlikely that any gentleman will go out of his way to watch Flowers, it offers some welcome respite when the lady’s turn to pick the flick comes around.Flowers is the story of six women spread over three generations. In 1936, we meet Rin (Yu Aoi), a pretty young girl about to be married off at the behest of her father. Rin rejects her “duty” and runs away on her wedding day. In 2009, we meet Kana (Kyoka Suzuki), a sullen-faced woman who never fulfilled her potential as a pianist. Called home for her grandmother’s funeral, Kana reunites with her sister Kei (Ryoko Hirosue), an endlessly cheerful doting mum. We discover that Rin was their grandmother and we find out that Kana will soon be a single mother. Cut to 1969 and Midori (Rena Tanaka) is the only woman in a publishing company, trying her best to be strong and independent. Her sisters are Kaoru (Yuko Takeuchi), a young widow, and Sato (Yukie Nakama), who we later learn is the mother of Kana and Kei.Flowers is a beautifully shot film, and that can’t be said enough. Japan’s picturesque countryside and coast play a big role in the story as do depictions of everyday Japanese life. Encompassing 80 years, the set design, outfits, soundtrack and, most notably, cinematic style for each period are perfect.The film is set up to be an exploration of family relationships with elements of female empowerment, finding oneself and returning home, but it delivers those somewhat clichéd themes in a refreshingly indirect way. None of the women appear out of their time frame other than a young Kana and intergenerational communication is limited to an old letter written by Sato to her daughters. Flowers simply follows women on their journeys as they find joy in their roles in their respective worlds. While this simplicity means that Flowers does drag at times, its beauty shines through.