7.8/10
860
6 user 17 critic

Kamigami no fukaki yokubô (1968)

GP | | Drama | 22 July 1970 (USA)
An engineer from Tokyo arrives on a drought-ridden tropical island to drill a well to power a nearby sugar mill. He meets the inbred Futori family, hated by the locals for breaking religious customs.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rentarô Mikuni ...
Nekichi Futori, the chained son
Chôichirô Kawarasaki ...
Kametaro Futori, the backward son
Kazuo Kitamura ...
Engineer Kariya
Hideko Okiyama ...
Toriko Futori, the retarded daughter
Yasuko Matsui ...
Uma Futori, the priestess daughter
Yoshi Katô ...
Ritsugen Ryu
Hôsei Komatsu
Chikako Hosokawa
Chikage Ôgi
Jun Hamamura
Taiji Tonoyama
Susumu Mizushima
Yasuhiko Ishizu
Kiyoshi Tokugawa
Kazuhiko Hasegawa
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Storyline

The Tokyo engineer Kariya arrives on a primitive tropical island to drill a well to provide water for the sugar mill. He is assisted on the island by Kametaro, from the inbred Futori family. Nekichi Futori is chained in a pit that he has to dig, in order to appease the gods for breaking island customs. Nekichi is in love with his sister Uma, who is a shaman priestess at the sacred shrine, that contains the only good water close to the mill. She is also the mistress of Ryu, the manager of the mill. The patriarch of the Futori family tries to get the engineer to marry his retarded daughter Toriko. Written by Will Gilbert

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Drama

Certificate:

GP | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

22 July 1970 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Deep Desire of Gods  »

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2.35 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Feverishly Transportative
1 January 2013 | by (Onomichi, 1953) – See all my reviews

Of all the Imamuras I've seen, this is the one that goes to the desert island with me. "Profound Desires of the Gods" (1968) is a feverishly transportative and sumptuous film. It seems as if when one starts to think nothing happens, everything happens.

Imamura's view of humanity is a curious blend of pessimism and deep, resonant humor to the extent that they seem to cancel each other out. Perhaps this is why his films are so peculiarly observant, and indeed anthropological. In this respect he's successful both as a "realist" (a notion I'm not fond of in the domain of film but which I use here complimentarily) and a visual poet. In fact, some portions of this film strongly foreshadow Malick's "The Thin Red Line" (1998) in the visual depiction of the narrative role of nature.

All of the Imamuras I know have an image (motif) or a scene that become a kind of hub; definitions of the films and something that stay and live on in the memory. In this film there are many, but two images glow strongest: the pit that Nekichi and the Futoris have been digging for years, as well as the final climax at sea.

On the dedicated forum for this film it has been suggested that there are many parallels between this and Teshigahara's "Suna no onna" (1964). I think that's a connection worth acknowledging and at best it enriches both films.

At this writing this film has received only 475 votes, which is a very small number considering this film has been available on Blu-ray courtesy of the Masters of Cinema series (Region B) for two and a half years.


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