Nihon no Yoru to Kiri (Night and Fog in Japan)

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Widely regarded as the most personal of director Nagisa Oshima's three 1960 films, Night and Fog in Japan centers around a gathering of former student activists, all of which protested the signing of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty. Preferring to let go of the past, the old protestors had regrouped for a mutual friend's marriage, and maintained a peaceful atmosphere until the last of their old companions arrives and immediately begins hurling accusations. Now a fugitive, the party crasher denounces the party as a charade and claims that those in attendance betrayed their own ideals in exchange for personal security. Before long, all pretenses of a happy reunion are thrown aside, and the marriage is reduced to an all-out brawl. Oshima himself was once a student protestor, and the film served as an open display of his disappointment with Japan's left-wing political movement meant to illustrate how those who once united in hopes of making a positive chance in Japanese society have denigrated into bickering, weak-minded versions of their former selves. ~ Tracie Cooper, Rovi


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