The Face of Another (I Have a Stranger's Face) (Tanin no kao) Reviews

  • Oct 03, 2018

    Brilliant movie with imaginative and fanciful visions, elaborate cinematography and a thoughtful philosophic constituent. The theme of broken identities is quite spread in cinema since its inception, but this Japanese picture has its own unique and at times pretty horrific tale to tell, with its quite innovative for Japanese cinema, back then, approach. It can remind one of 'Eyes without Face', but actually I think it's more deep in psychological sense.

    Brilliant movie with imaginative and fanciful visions, elaborate cinematography and a thoughtful philosophic constituent. The theme of broken identities is quite spread in cinema since its inception, but this Japanese picture has its own unique and at times pretty horrific tale to tell, with its quite innovative for Japanese cinema, back then, approach. It can remind one of 'Eyes without Face', but actually I think it's more deep in psychological sense.

  • Sep 14, 2015

    year s/b 1966 not '67 besides that i found this 2b really creepy still today & one more thing would make a perfect dbl feature with 'eyes without a face" or 'open your eyes'

    year s/b 1966 not '67 besides that i found this 2b really creepy still today & one more thing would make a perfect dbl feature with 'eyes without a face" or 'open your eyes'

  • Sep 06, 2014

    Although it leaves me cold emotionally, this movie is visually stunning and intelligent.

    Although it leaves me cold emotionally, this movie is visually stunning and intelligent.

  • Avatar
    Daniel D Super Reviewer
    May 22, 2013

    The Face of Another, unlike Pitfall is highly symbolic and relatable. It's a story of identity, and the constant way humans cover up imperfections. Highly philosophical and especially the first half has deep thoughts. Add this to the beautiful but simple visuals, and it's a real treat. This reminded me of so many other films. The Elephant Man and The House is Black immediately come to mind. Then the surreal first half brought Persona and Un Chien Andalou into the mix. I talk about the first half more since it was far more memorable. After the mask came on this became more straightforward, and less stunning. It still brought up interesting new ideas, but lost the spookiness, and emptiness. Which perhaps was intentional, since by the end the main character is completely transformed. I love the opening scene, and all the scenes involving the creation of the mast. Enjoyable art movie.

    The Face of Another, unlike Pitfall is highly symbolic and relatable. It's a story of identity, and the constant way humans cover up imperfections. Highly philosophical and especially the first half has deep thoughts. Add this to the beautiful but simple visuals, and it's a real treat. This reminded me of so many other films. The Elephant Man and The House is Black immediately come to mind. Then the surreal first half brought Persona and Un Chien Andalou into the mix. I talk about the first half more since it was far more memorable. After the mask came on this became more straightforward, and less stunning. It still brought up interesting new ideas, but lost the spookiness, and emptiness. Which perhaps was intentional, since by the end the main character is completely transformed. I love the opening scene, and all the scenes involving the creation of the mast. Enjoyable art movie.

  • Feb 03, 2013

    One of the most incredible psychological thrillers ever made, shot in vacant and cavernous hospital rooms, streets loaded with bodies and the insides of doomed houses. It is deeply unsettling in its portrayal of a man stripped of his identity, only to find out later his "identity" really was his "mask" after all. Powerful stuff, and as always with a Japanese film, shot and framed very, very precisely and meticulously.

    One of the most incredible psychological thrillers ever made, shot in vacant and cavernous hospital rooms, streets loaded with bodies and the insides of doomed houses. It is deeply unsettling in its portrayal of a man stripped of his identity, only to find out later his "identity" really was his "mask" after all. Powerful stuff, and as always with a Japanese film, shot and framed very, very precisely and meticulously.

  • Nov 10, 2012

    Passable foreign film. I thought it was interesting and I liked the subplot too. A little too long but worth watching at least once.

    Passable foreign film. I thought it was interesting and I liked the subplot too. A little too long but worth watching at least once.

  • Oct 25, 2012

    Readings: The Close-Up: Mary Ann Doane "the face is that bodily part not accessible to subject's own gaze" proximity vs. distance & large vs. small close-up engages the spectator "Even monsters have their pleasure." --continual freeze frame --scene of him in the mirror, playing with his face and expressions "mask has its own character" "getting drunk a mask in itself" seduces his wife, mask is half-on during fight (postsex)

    Readings: The Close-Up: Mary Ann Doane "the face is that bodily part not accessible to subject's own gaze" proximity vs. distance & large vs. small close-up engages the spectator "Even monsters have their pleasure." --continual freeze frame --scene of him in the mirror, playing with his face and expressions "mask has its own character" "getting drunk a mask in itself" seduces his wife, mask is half-on during fight (postsex)

  • Jun 15, 2012

    Filme genial sobre um sujeito que tem o rosto desfigurado num acidente e que recebe uma nova face atravà (C)s de um mà (C)dico cheio de teorias absurdas sobre personalidade. Questionamentos pós modernos ao longo de todo o filme: somos um, ou somos vários? Como à (C) continuamos tendo a sensação de sermos a mesma pessoa se mudamos a cada dia? Porque desejamos continuar a viver se a morte à (C) certa? Como seria uma sociedade onde todos são absolutamente livres? Enfim, qual à (C) a condição de liberdade?

    Filme genial sobre um sujeito que tem o rosto desfigurado num acidente e que recebe uma nova face atravà (C)s de um mà (C)dico cheio de teorias absurdas sobre personalidade. Questionamentos pós modernos ao longo de todo o filme: somos um, ou somos vários? Como à (C) continuamos tendo a sensação de sermos a mesma pessoa se mudamos a cada dia? Porque desejamos continuar a viver se a morte à (C) certa? Como seria uma sociedade onde todos são absolutamente livres? Enfim, qual à (C) a condição de liberdade?

  • Apr 30, 2012

    What's the problem with wearing the mask? Just bear with it. And the philosophical discussion was shit.

    What's the problem with wearing the mask? Just bear with it. And the philosophical discussion was shit.

  • Avatar
    Eric B Super Reviewer
    Apr 23, 2012

    "Civilization demands light, even at night. But a man without a face is free only when darkness rules the world." The high-concept plot of "The Face of Another" suggests a horror film, but it's really more of a psychological think-piece. Okuyama (Tatsuya Nakadai) is a business executive whose face has been gruesomely burnt in a chemical accident. He spends his day wrapped behind bandages, bitterly loathing himself and his plight. Even his wife can't bear to be around him anymore. But Okuyama finds a doctor with a sophisticated procedure for taking a mold of another face (the two pay a random man for the privilege) and creating an undetectable, form-fitting mask. The doctor is brimming with philosophy about the relationship between face and personality, and warns there will be emotional repercussions when Okuyama changes the interface through which he views the world and it views him. Eventually, the issue narrows to the familiar scenario of the implausibly unrecognized husband trying to seduce his wife as a "stranger" to see what happens. Somewhat disappointing. Director Hiroshi Teshigahara ("Woman in the Dunes," "Pitfall") also makes a strange choice to add a second, sketchier story that never intersects with the first. This tale follows another person with disfiguring facial scars -- this time, a once-pretty young woman who's apparently living in some sort of asylum. The purpose of this sidelight is somewhat mysterious and unresolved, as is a peculiar subplot about a girl with a baffling fixation on yo-yos. Like with Teshigahara's other well-known films, existential issues of identity are a prime concern and the imagery has a surreal, allegorical quality that Rod Serling would have appreciated.

    "Civilization demands light, even at night. But a man without a face is free only when darkness rules the world." The high-concept plot of "The Face of Another" suggests a horror film, but it's really more of a psychological think-piece. Okuyama (Tatsuya Nakadai) is a business executive whose face has been gruesomely burnt in a chemical accident. He spends his day wrapped behind bandages, bitterly loathing himself and his plight. Even his wife can't bear to be around him anymore. But Okuyama finds a doctor with a sophisticated procedure for taking a mold of another face (the two pay a random man for the privilege) and creating an undetectable, form-fitting mask. The doctor is brimming with philosophy about the relationship between face and personality, and warns there will be emotional repercussions when Okuyama changes the interface through which he views the world and it views him. Eventually, the issue narrows to the familiar scenario of the implausibly unrecognized husband trying to seduce his wife as a "stranger" to see what happens. Somewhat disappointing. Director Hiroshi Teshigahara ("Woman in the Dunes," "Pitfall") also makes a strange choice to add a second, sketchier story that never intersects with the first. This tale follows another person with disfiguring facial scars -- this time, a once-pretty young woman who's apparently living in some sort of asylum. The purpose of this sidelight is somewhat mysterious and unresolved, as is a peculiar subplot about a girl with a baffling fixation on yo-yos. Like with Teshigahara's other well-known films, existential issues of identity are a prime concern and the imagery has a surreal, allegorical quality that Rod Serling would have appreciated.