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The Pillow Book (1996)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  6 June 1997 (USA)
6.7
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Ratings: 6.7/10 from 10,114 users   Metascore: 64/100
Reviews: 91 user | 52 critic | 20 from Metacritic.com

As a young girl in Japan, Nagiko's father paints characters on her face, and her aunt reads to her from "The Pillow Book", the diary of a 10th-century lady-in-waiting. Nagiko grows up, ... See full summary »

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Title: The Pillow Book (1996)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Yoshi Oida ...
The Publisher
Ken Ogata ...
The Father
Hideko Yoshida ...
The Aunt / The Maid
...
Jerome
Judy Ongg ...
The Mother
Ken Mitsuishi ...
The Husband
Yutaka Honda ...
Hoki
Barbara Lott ...
Jerome's Mother
Miwako Kawai ...
Young Nagiko
...
Jerome's sister (as Lynne Frances Wachendorfer)
Chizuru Ohnishi ...
Young Nagiko
Shiho Takamatsu ...
Young Nagiko
Aki Ishimaru ...
Young Nagiko
Hisashi Hidaka ...
Calligrapher
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Storyline

As a young girl in Japan, Nagiko's father paints characters on her face, and her aunt reads to her from "The Pillow Book", the diary of a 10th-century lady-in-waiting. Nagiko grows up, obsessed with books, papers, and writing on bodies, and her sexual odyssey (and the creation of her own Pillow Book) is a "parfait mélange" of classical Japanese, modern Chinese, and Western film images. Written by Michael C. Berch <mcb@postmodern.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

book | paper | paint | chinese | japan | See All (270) »

Taglines:

Things that make the heart beat faster. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

| | |

Release Date:

6 June 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

O Livro de Cabeceira  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$105,922 (USA) (6 June 1997)

Gross:

$2,293,037 (USA) (15 August 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

|

Aspect Ratio:

1.75 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When Nagiko's mother delivers the birthday blessing, she starts in Japanese, as her father did, and then switches to Mandarin Chinese. See more »

Goofs

Nagiko says early on that her mother taught her Mandarin. Later, she says that she went to Hong Kong to improve the Chinese her mother taught her. However, the majority of people in Hong Kong speak Cantonese, not Mandarin. See more »

Quotes

Nagiko: You've been reading my diary?
The Husband: Isn't that why people keep diaries? To be read by someone else? Otherwise why keep them?
Nagiko: To know about themselves.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Peter Greenaway in Indianapolis (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

La Marquise
Written by Guesch Patti and Dimitri Tikovoi
Performed by Guesch Patti
Courtesy of EMI Music Publishing France SA
See more »

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User Reviews

Indescribable
26 May 2002 | by (Morro Bay, Hammett Valley, Twin Rocks) – See all my reviews

God, what words to use when trying to describe this film!!! Exotic, erotic??? Those are obvious choices that pop right up. Quite a bit of this film is spoken in Japanese, and I usually hate films with subtitles, yet I loved THE PILLOW BOOK. It is sensual, delicate and beautifully executed. The music is mysterious and sexy. The way it is filmed is pure art, like the unfolding of the pages of the book it's about. Nagiko (Vivian Wu) is trying to publish a book written in caligraphy but is rejected. Looking for someone with perfect skin, she decides to use the method of writing her caligraphy onto human skin the way her father did when she was a girl. There is plenty of naked Ewan McGregor to behold, and he gives a fine...ahem...acting performance also!!! Of course this film won't appeal to just anyone, but if you're in the mood for a visually striking, colorful, cultural piece of art film, try this one out.


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