This classic Japanese horror movie directed by Nobuo Nakagawa is based on an 18th-century masterpiece written by Nanboku Tsuruya. It is about a woman who haunts her husband after she dies a miserable death. The story has terrified the Japanese people for ages. Written by
Japanese horror film has a samurai (Shigeru Amachi) killing his wife (Kazuko Wakasugi) so that he can marry into a rich family. Soon after the second wedding the ghost of the dead wife seeks her vengeance. I haven't seen many of these Japanese ghost films but I've read this one has been made over eight times so it's apparently pretty popular. Since I haven't seen any of the others I can't compare them but I was still pretty impressed with this one. The movie runs a short 75-minutes but the first 55-minutes are devoted to the backstory of the samurai and his wife. Her murder doesn't happen until very late in the film and then it switches gears to the actual haunting, which takes place very fast. Some might say the film spends way too much time with the dramatic stuff but I think this is the reason the film works so well. Instead of just killing the wife at the start we get to know each character and we get to understand why the husband decides to kill her. We also see how the greed gets other people involved and how their lives are destroyed as well. When the hauntings do begin to happen they come at us very quickly and this here gives them a rather unsettling atmosphere, which works very well. It seems this film was influenced by the look and feel of the Hammer films out at the time since they were very popular in Japan. The violence of those Hammer films made their way into this as we get a pretty ghoulish murder of the wife where she's poisoned and pretty much has part of her face melt off. The performance by Amachi is extremely good as we certainly believe his breakdown once he begins to get haunted. It's Wakasugi who steals the show however as the tortured wife who will eventually seek revenge.
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