Director Mamoru Oshii is best known for his work in anime, particularly 1995's Ghost in the Shell. This resulted in me having some level of expectation in regards to Nowhere Girl. However, I was a bit disappointed to see that the film is a bit of a slow paced low key affair. Much of the film has a very dreamlike feel to it, with a very classical score and various artistic shots of sculptures. While there is something more than meets the eye in regards to Ai's fractured psyche, the film takes its time getting there.
The biggest saving grace for Nowhere Girl is the final 15 minutes or so, which turns into a completely different film. The ending is a quite unexpected turn of events and it results some pretty crowd-pleasing moments. However, my only wish is that this section of the film wasn't such a slog to get to. While I was most definitely somewhat disappointed with Nowhere Girl, it is still worth checking out for the ending.
★ ★ ★ 1/2 | FAIR