Dry Lake (1960) Poster


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A tale of an alienated youth in a time of turmoil
pscamp016 March 2014
This movie is also known as Youth in Fury, which is how it is listed in Hulu Plus. IMDb lists it as Masahiro Shinoda's first movie, but it is actually his second. This is significant because after the commercial failure of his first movie, One Way Ticket For Love, Shinoda's studio selected his projects for a number of years before he was able to gain his independence again. The result was a number of movies like this one: a brilliantly directed movie with a not particularly interesting story. The movie is a look at a college student named Shimojo set against a backdrop of widespread student demonstrations against a proposed U.S.- Japan security treaty. Shimojo has two sets of friends: a group of rich hedonists and a group of politically active friends, which results in two stories, neither one of which feels fully developed. And while Shimojo seems utterly captivating to everyone in the movie, he is so petulant and selfish that it is hard to see what they see in him or to care what happens to him. But even at this early stage in his career, Shinoda's eye for composition is so strong, that the movie remains a compelling visual experience. It's a shame that he didn't have a script that was equal to his talents.
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