Wednesday, June 20, 2007

June 20th Log

1953, Keisuke Kinoshita, Japan
1st Viewing, DVD

A Japanese Tragedy opens with a dazzling montage of postwar Japan news footage. These opening images quickly establish a setting and a tone, underlying the tragic atmosphere and poverty of a postwar Japan. This tragic existence remains throughout the film, which hopelessly details the heartbreakingly lingering process of recovery from war. The film incorporates a use of flashbacks and repetitive imagery (such as moving trains) to express the feeling of the past and of the transition into the future. The final shot heightens this further as we observe Hauko (played by Yuko Mochizuki) standing alone amongst the flow of the world. A Japanese Tragedy is directed by Keisuke Kinoshita, a filmmaker that always explored genres and techniques, and ultimately emerged as one of Japan’s most beloved directors (as well as one of the leading filmmakers of the Japanese New Wave). With A Japanese Tragedy Kinoshita has made a grim and difficult portrait of postwar Japan. A truly haunting and sad tragedy.

>>> Here are the opening moments from A Japanese Tragedy:


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