Akira, the young new schoolteacher in town falls for secretive Miki, an older woman who takes care of her family's urn that supposedly holds a forest wolf-spirit, inugami. People soon start disappearing and the town blames Akira.
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Akira, a teacher from Tokyo, has just arrived in a small rural town to begin his new job. Soon after arriving, he meets, and begins to fall for, Miki, a papermaker and part of a large and unusual family. When he learns of an ancient legend that the family carries the curse of the Inugami, or Dog God, he brushes it off as silly superstition. After a series of mysterious deaths, however, the townspeople begin to grow restless, and Akira must confront the truth about Miki and her family. Written by
Jean-Marc Rocher <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Many may find this slow going, but it is beautifully shot, and compellingly strange. This kind of folk myth is not often seen on the screen, and hardly ever in such a low-key, erotic style. And there is nothing so terrible about the soundtrack, except perhaps to opera snobs who can't bear to hear Verdi put to use in such an out-of-context way. Not a great film, but above-average for this genre. The Japanese countryside is gorgeous, the atmospherics are evocative, and the actors, particularly the women, are all first rate. Throw in some fascinating scenes of paper making, and on the other hand, some beautifully framed sex scenes, and this is certainly much more watchable than many of its American equivalents.
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