8.0/10
8,779
38 user 86 critic

Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985)

Trailer
1:24 | Trailer
A fictionalized account in four chapters of the life of celebrated Japanese writer Yukio Mishima.

Director:

Paul Schrader
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ken Ogata ... Yukio Mishima (segment "November 25, 1970") / Narrator
Masayuki Shionoya ... Morita (segment "November 25, 1970")
Hiroshi Mikami ... Cadet #1 (segment "November 25, 1970")
Junya Fukuda Junya Fukuda ... Cadet #2 (segment "November 25, 1970")
Shigeto Tachihara Shigeto Tachihara ... Cadet #3 (segment "November 25, 1970")
Junkichi Orimoto Junkichi Orimoto ... General Mashita (segment "November 25, 1970")
Naoko Ôtani ... Mother (segment "Flashbacks")
Gô Rijû Gô Rijû ... Mishima, age 18-19 (segment "Flashbacks")
Masato Aizawa ... Mishima - age 9-14 (segment "Flashbacks")
Yuki Nagahara ... Mishima, age 5 (segment "Flashbacks")
Kyûzô Kobayashi Kyûzô Kobayashi ... Literary Friend (segment "Flashbacks")
Yuki Kitazume Yuki Kitazume ... Dancing Friend (segment "Flashbacks")
Haruko Katô ... Grandmother (segment "Flashbacks")
Yasosuke Bando ... Mizoguchi (segment "The Temple of the Golden Pavilion")
Hisako Manda Hisako Manda ... Mariko (segment "The Temple of the Golden Pavilion")
Edit

Storyline

A fictionalized account in four chapters of the life of celebrated Japanese author Yukio Mishima. Three of the segments parallel events in Mishima's life with his novels (The Temple of the Golden Pavilion, Kyoko's House, and Runaway Horses), while the fourth depicts the actual events of the 25th Nov. 1970, "The Last Day". Written by Nick Lopez <ntlopez@fas.harvard.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

gay | homosexual | japan | writer | author | See All (283) »

Taglines:

On November 25, 1970, Japan's greatest author Yukio Mishima commited an act that shocked the literary world...

Genres:

Biography | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film uses different color palettes to differentiate between the chapters of the film:
  • the (1970) contemporary scenes are shot in subdued colours
  • the flashbacks are in black-and-white
  • the "Temple of the Golden Pavilion" chapter is in tones of gold and green
  • the "Kyoko's House" chapter is in tones of pink and grey
  • and the "Runaway Horses" chapter is in tones of orange and black.
See more »

Goofs

Shadow of camera and operator on the ground, to the bottom left of frame, as the garrison assembles for Mishima to deliver his address. See more »

Quotes

Osamu: [after his mistress cuts him with a small blade] A thought just occurred to me: "This is the woman I've been looking for. I've finally found her." For the first time I feel like I exist. I don't need a mirror.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Yukio Mishima is acknowledged to have been a real person, but his acts have been fictionalized by writers. Other persons and events in this film are fictitious. Any similarity to actual persons and events is unintentional. See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK VHS version apparently inadvertently left out two shots during the film's ending: The suicide ending to "Kiyoko's House" and the burning of the pavilion in "Temple of the Golden Pavillion." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Pop Culture Beast's Halloween Horror Picks: Candyman (2015) See more »

User Reviews

 
Highly stylized, rewarding film for thoughtful viewers.
12 January 2007 | by ags123See all my reviews

It has taken several viewings for me to fully appreciate this film. Initially, I was struck by the stylized sets, but found the rest slow going and dull. I thought that such a sensational subject needed the Ken Russell treatment to take it way over the top. I now find the enforced restraint (placed on the production by Mishima's widow) to be an asset. Some of the more lurid aspects of Mishima's life are reiterated and dramatized by corresponding themes from his novels. I think it helps to be familiar with the novels - that's what finally made the difference for me. Still feel the film overall could be a little tighter and warmer, but it's genuinely unique, and deserves serious attention. Love the fact that the Japanese characters speak Japanese - not English. The Philip Glass score is mesmerizing.


13 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 38 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Country:

USA | Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

20 September 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Mishima See more »

Filming Locations:

Japan See more »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$5,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$437,547

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$569,996
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page



Recently Viewed