‘Wabis Sabi is a Japanese aesthetic concept that I applied. It meant that nothing n the film could new or clean or pristine, or futuristic. Everything in the film showed the wear of time, the passage of time. Because the characters, in a way, were almost thrown away spare parts that no-one cared about, it felt like this style would be another thing that would be expressive of one of the central ideas in the book.
One of the other great Japanese concepts in aesthetics is Mono No Aware, which is the notion of the evanescence of things. It’s often described as the “ahhhhhness of things”, where simple, mundane things can sometimes evoke the big spiritual feelings that one has about being alive in the world.’
From an interview with Mark Romanek, here, talking about one of the best movies I’ve seen for some time.