When samurai Hiromasa comes to Seimei, Kyoto's court Onmyoji (a fortune teller in commune with the spirits), to warn of a plot against the government, the two discover that the court's formidable magician, Doson, is indeed planning a coup.
Set in the capital city of Kyoto during the Heian period, a magician and fortune teller Onmyoji Seimei is called in to assist Hiromasa to thwart court wizard and minister Doson who is suspected of being at the cusp of orchestrating a coup. With the physical and metaphysical worlds allied the combined force may have a chance to beat back Doson. Magic, surrealism and beauty fill the screen, and air,Written by
From the Making-Of Documentary on the Special Edition DVD: - Total number of cuts: 1026 - Concept planning: 5 years - Number of days filming: 93 days - Number of days in post-production: 128 days - Location crew: 86 people - SFX crew: 31 people - CG integration staff: 37 people - Total number of crew: 154 people - Those who camped out for the first show: 400 people (at Nihon Gekijo Theater) - Number of theaters: 225 theaters - Number of viewers: 2.2 million people (as of Summer 2001) - Gross at box office: Approx. 3 billion yen (roughly $30 million USD) See more »
Contrary to some of the more unfavorable comments, this is Japanese movie, has nothing to do with the Chinese genre of wuxia or martial hero movie, and does not prominently feature martial arts. Instead, it is a movie about an Onmyoji or Master or Yin and Yang, an ancient Japanese master of the occult arts, including exorcism, necromancy, foreknowledge, etc. The recreation of these arts is quite authentic and the movie is suitable for use in the classroom to help students understand the jumble of Chinese Daoism and Indian Buddhism that made up Chinese esoteric learning for the early Japanese. The hero, Abe no Seimei, is played by a noted Noh actor. His style is arresting, so mannered that it might seem artificial. But in this performance it gives Seimei an otherworldly, superhuman air that ads mystery to the character. If you rent it on DVD, be sure to choose to hear it in Japanese with subtitles rather than in the dubbed version. Much of the magic depends on chants and spells and I can't imagine how they could have dubbed those. THis movie requires close attention to follow the story, but it is worth it. An engrossing story of a totally different world, where the fate of nations is determined by sorcerers and wrathful spirits, and imperial forces rely as much on exorcists and priests as on generals. Highly recommended.
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