In a poor 19th century rural Japanese village, everyone who reaches the age of 70 has to climb a nearby mountain to die. An old woman is getting close to the cut-off age, and we follow her last days with her family.
Plastics salesman Oshima disappeared without a word to anyone, and has been missing for two years. Shohei Imamura and his crew follow Oshima's fiancé Yoshie and actor Shigeru Tsuyuguchi as they investigate the disappearance.
It's really interesting to see one of the early works of Imamura. This film includes epitomes of the overall style of the great director: depiction of the lower, outlaw parts of Japanese society; criticizing both the authority and the society for their conformism with prevailing conditions; use of animals(namely pigs for this film) as an allegory for individuals (here it should be underlined that this object of allegory beats up its master!); and characterizing women as determined individuals who have power within the society, and who are more conscious than men. In order to trace the sources of the stylized director who made brilliant films like Kuroi Ame, Narayama bushiko, and Unagi, this film is a must see.
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