*** (out of four)
When two families discover their 6-year-old boys were switched at birth, there’s no easy solution. Trade sons? Have one family raise both? Pretend they never received this shocking news? The presentation of class and priorities sticks to the obvious, and the film doesn’t have any standout performances from its adult leads. Yet examinations of nature vs. nurture don’t get much more quietly thrilling. Director Kore-eda Hirokazu (“Nobody Knows,” “I Wish”), long skilled at stories of families and working with child actors, delivers a fascinating discussion of human connection and what we need our children to be. The exquisite “Like Father Like Son” does nothing loudly or quickly, but you could marvel at it all day, unanswerable questions hovering like kites that have escaped their strings.
Reviewed during the 2013 Chicago International Film Festival