I watched it couple of times when i was undergraduate in China.
My friends and i had briefly discussed it before. And according to my understanding of this work, i must say that people were lost in love and translation of their emotion, rather than culture.
The director Sofia Coppola chose Tokyo, or the Japanese culture as the background in order to create the strange atmosphere ,which was strange, even embarrassing for both the dramatis personae and audiences, and a cold atmosphere that made the audience understand the feelings of the two characters, so that an ordinary story was able to expand in an ordinary way. However, the effect was quite extraordinary.
I can hardly imagine that it could be more impressive if the story happened in Paris or New York, the place that has been so familiar with for most of the westerners, and where has been full of such sort of romance created by westerners whose cultural background totally coincide with the atmosphere.
What's more, the way, in which two dramatis personae Bob Harris (Bill Murray) and Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson) expressed their emotion, was Eastern. No more words, no extra conversation, the careful expression and implicit love were typically characterized by Eastern culture elements.
Anyway, this is my view about this film and the cultural items it concerned.