This is one of those films that is extremely Japanese. From my western perspective I would put it in the same field as Izo.
The only section i didn't like was the animated bit. Which was extremely on the nose in its symbolism and metaphor. It kind of felt like I was watching something a depressed high-schooler would make in A/V class. The rest of the film is refreshing in its weirdness. The first film especially got me excited for what was ahead. The use of lighting and even the filming of the set exterior were marvelous. Giving the feel that this was not just a story but an ever recurring drama. the characters are not actors but the constant and immovable forces which inhabit the land of tears.
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