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"Ghost Story of the Snow Witch" - Effective ghost story told with modest means
This is essentially the same Snow Witch story as told in the well-known Japanese ghost film anthology, "Kwaidan". Here it is extended out into a 75 minute excursion into the supernatural.
A master sculptor and his apprentice are trapped in a bad snow storm after finding a special tree for carving a statue for the local temple. Finding refuge in an abandoned hut they celebrate their luck n finding the tree but soon they are visited by the Snow Witch who freezes the sculptor to death but takes pity on the apprentice. He must promise to never speak of this or she'll return and kill him. Back in town, the apprentice is promoted and given the task of making the statue. A mysterious beautiful woman arrives during a torrential rain storm and quickly falls in love with the apprentice. Soon she comes under the lustful eye of the evil Baliff who controls the town. And so it goes....
While the painterly method this story is told in Kwaidan is well-known and appreciated, here the story is accomplished with very careful lighting effects and lens filters. In some ways this is a much more beautiful telling of the story. Akira Ikufube provides a familiar yet unique score. Aside from a couple of clumsy spots in the script and the actor playing the apprentice underplays his part, this is an excellent film.
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