An elder ronin samurai arrives at a feudal lord's home and requests an honorable place to commit suicide. But when the ronin inquires about a younger samurai who arrived before him things take an unexpected turn.
The mother of a feudal lord's only heir is kidnapped away from her husband by the lord. The husband and his samurai father must decide whether to accept the unjust decision, or risk death to get her back.
Jumpei Niki, a Tokyo based entomologist and educator, is in a poor seaside village collecting specimens of sand insects. As it is late in the day and as he has missed the last bus back to the city, some of the local villagers suggest that he spend the night there, they offering to find him a place to stay. That place is the home of a young woman, whose house is located at the bottom of a sand pit accessible only by ladder. He later learns that the woman's husband and child died in a sandstorm, their undiscovered bodies buried somewhere near the house. The next morning as he tries to leave, he finds that the ladder is gone - he realizing that the ladder he climbed down was a rope ladder which is anchored above the pit - meaning that he is trapped with the young woman as the walls of the pit are sand with no grip. He also realizes that this entrapment was the villagers and the young woman's plan for him to stay there permanently to be her helper in the never-ending task of digging out ... Written by
Official submission of Japan for the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category of the 37th Academy Awards in 1965. See more »
Jumpei is seen from behind, adjusting his clothing after urinating at the wall of sand. When he turns around, there are no wet or discolored areas in the sand as there would be if he had actually urinated. See more »
It's like building a house in the water when ships exist. Why insist on a house?
You want to go home too.
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After watching this movie, my idea of what a good movie, had changed. The imagery is utterly beautiful, and the emotion of the relationship is intense. While other movies rely on acting, or emotion to capture the audience this movie is very special because how the director, and the screenwriter(kobe abe, also wrote a book by the same title), let the viewers develop their own ideas and perspectives. Having seen this movie with other people and looking at different comment about the movie, each person had a different opinion of the movie. In a complex world full of vice, and danger, it is sometimes the simplest things that can make a man beg for mercy. The everlasting sand, can bring you to love, or to destruction...
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