Near the turbulent end of the Edo era, a man returning to Japan after exile in America searches for his wife and becomes swept up in the current of revolution in this incisive period drama from the great Shohei Imamura.
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.
An impossible tale. Taro, an old man who dies homeless in Tokyo has told Yosuke, a weak-willed out-of-work salaryman about a golden statue that he left years ago in a house by the sea in Noto. Yosuke goes and he's captivated by Saeko, a young women who lives in the house where Taro left the statue. She has a strange affliction: water builds up in her and she can only vent it by wicked acts, such as shoplifting, or, more powerfully, through orgasm. Yosuke obliges, the water gives him life, as well as the plants and fish it reaches. Saeko feels shame, and she has a past. Taro's ghost urges Yosuke to fulfill his desires, but can the relationship survive?Written by
It's sad to know there will be no more new Imamura films. I think the previous reviewer is probably lacking a sense of fun. This isn't drivel; it's wicked fun. In the same way he dissects small-town vs. big-city attitudes in "The Eel," Imamura shows us how disconnected from real life the corporate world of Tokyo can make a man by thrusting him into the chaos of joblessness where everything he knows is useless. This is an opportunity to see the ever-hot Koji Yakusho at his James Stewart/Buster Keatonesque best in a story that's worthy of García-Márquez, for its utterly plausible mix of the other-worldly with the down-to-earth. I gave it a 9 out of 10 because Imamura seems to be mystified enough by women that he doesn't flesh out their characters as much as they might deserve, but the mystification is part of the story in this case. Great score, too!
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