12 October 2015 | christopher-underwood
not a frame that is not perfect
Fine film. I usually prefer non historic Japanese films but this is really very good and the tendency to being ponderous is not here at all. Watched this after seeing the wonderful Pale Flower, directed by Masahiro Shinoda a few years before this and was not disappointed. The film opens with a discussion as to how the suicide sequence is to be shot and we see traditional Kabuki puppets, all during the opening credits. Historic setting and very traditional goings on, not good news, I thought but how wrong. Once the film begins we are in the territory of live action only, although there is the sensational element of puppetry in the form of black cloaked 'puppeteers' forever hovering around, attending to the main protagonists and changing scenery about. There is not a frame that is not perfect and despite the plot being remarkably slender, this is riveting and all involving.