Fire Festival (Himatsuri)

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Movie Info

Himatsuri is based on a real life tragedy, in which a Japanese man inexplicably slaughtered his family and then killed himself. Kinya Kitaoji plays the thoroughly self-centered "protagonist," who does what he pleases no matter who he hurts. No one dares question Kitaoji due to his blasting-cap temperament. The only thing Kitaoji holds sacred is the land around him, but he's willing to destroy even that to have his own way. He befouls a lake that is sacred to the Shinto religion, spilling oil into the waters rather than letting them fall into the hands of land speculators. Suddenly experiencing a religious awakening, Kitaoji decides to "atone" -- by murdering his family, then committing suicide. No explanations are offered by director Kenji Nakagami: one takes what one wishes from Himatsuri. The film was released to some English-speaking markets as Fire Festival. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi


Critic Reviews for Fire Festival (Himatsuri)

All Critics (4) | Top Critics (1)

  • "Himatsuri" is a powerfully mysterious look at Japan's loss of innocence, a movie of strange beauties alive with a reverence for nature.

    Jan 1, 2000 | Full Review…
  • Intensely dramatic and visually riveting, this highlight of Japanese cinema contrasts modernism and rural traditionalism through the struggle of one man who's at one with nature.

    Aug 16, 2012 | Rating: A | Full Review…

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