'I Don't Worry About the Little Things': 85 Years Old and Going Strong

A Japanese farmer shares her simple yet powerful life philosophy. 

As much a lyrical tone poem as it is a personal portrait, director Mackenzie Sheppard’s film, Oba-Chan feels like a meditative experience. Gorgeous black and white cinematography reveals the life and words of Oba-Chan, an 85-year-old Japanese farmer who tends to her land all by herself. Oba-Chan isn’t a romanticized heroine — the film never drifts into cliché. It simply captures her straightforward outlook. The key? Patience, hard work, and composure. As Oba-Chan puts it, “If you fret too much, you can’t move forward.”

The Atlantic has featured filmmaker Mackenzie Sheppard’s work before with Yoshi’s Blend, a documentary that depicts one man’s quest to bring hope to people following the Japanese earthquake and tsunami -- one cup of coffee at a time.

For more work by Mackenzie Sheppard, visit www.mackfilm.com.

Ivan Kander is a filmmaker, writer, video editor, and motion-graphic artist from Washington, D.C. He is also an assistant editor at the short-film curation site, Short of the Week. His personal site is www.lucky9studios.com.

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