Summer vacation has emptied a Japanese boys' school of all but three boys: the junior Norio & the seniors Kazuhiko & Naoto. They have no families to return to for the summer, so they spend ... See full summary »
Summer vacation has emptied a Japanese boys' school of all but three boys: the junior Norio & the seniors Kazuhiko & Naoto. They have no families to return to for the summer, so they spend their days in the empty school. A darkness hangs over the three however: the suicide, three months earlier, of classmate Yu. Norio blames Kazuhiko for Yu's death, because it was well-known that Yu loved Kazuhiko; so Kazuhiko is cruel to Norio, and yet has bad dreams. This uneasy arrangement is exacerbated by the arrival of Kaoru, a student early for the fall - who looks exactly like Yu. Written by
Gary Dickerson <email@example.com>
The director of this film is noted for schlock (Gamera, Godzilla and Anime), but this little film, which gained release in the West and even made it to home video, is something of a curiosity.
The yearnings of a group of schoolboys for one another at a palatial but deserted house where they attend summer school one particularly fetid year suspended somewhere between the past and the future, could be called homoerotic were it not for the obvious fact that the boys are all played by girls. The usual Japanese obsessions with unrequited passion and suicide are filtered in against the backdrop of the mysterious house and grounds. But nothing is resolved, except perhaps the suspicion that it is all only a dream.
Yuriko Nakamura's lovely piano music accompanied by Hajime Mizoguchi's cello contribute to the altogether captivating and haunting atmosphere. I only rate it above average because it doesn't amount to much more than a pretty curio. But a curio that lingers in the memory long after (more than a decade after) I first saw it.
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