"But This I Know for Certain: You'll Come Back Again ..."
If you're a fan of Kobayashi's masterpiece of the supernatural, "Kwaidan", then this film will seem very familiar in its look and pacing, even to portions of the score. Speaking of which, it may appear strange that "Solveig's Song", a piece by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg, opens a movie set in Edo period Japan, and returns as a theme throughout the soundtrack, but read the lyrics. Then you'll understand.
"The Haunted Lantern" is based on a classic Japanese ghost story, "The Peony Lantern", which, like the tales in "Kwaidan", was also translated by Lafcadio Hearn. So there's another parallel to the Kobayashi film. However, there's a bit more gore here than "Kwaidan" and the effects are flashier. Although I can't rate this quite as highly as its predecessor, it's well worth watching, being by turns eerie and gruesome and heart-breakingly tragic.
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