Reviews

  • Jun 01, 2013

    A far cry from the great movie Sansho the Bailiff, this movie was uneven, choppy, and had an underwhelming, abrupt ending. It definitely did not meet expectations. However, it was pretty decent, had a good story, and had some funny moments, so it was OK overall.

    A far cry from the great movie Sansho the Bailiff, this movie was uneven, choppy, and had an underwhelming, abrupt ending. It definitely did not meet expectations. However, it was pretty decent, had a good story, and had some funny moments, so it was OK overall.

  • Aug 26, 2012

    Mizoguchi's penultimate film, shot in color a year before his death, is a sweeping, over-the-top 12th century saga of family loyalty and class discrimination. Impressively mounted.

    Mizoguchi's penultimate film, shot in color a year before his death, is a sweeping, over-the-top 12th century saga of family loyalty and class discrimination. Impressively mounted.

  • Jun 26, 2011

    Although not really true to its original text, the film can be described as one of the closest adaptations. Particularly, I think the performance are magnificent, with some details to its setting while constantly putting the angles of each shot to fill up the scene. The technical setting, however, doesn't live up to my expectation; I think since it's the second film Mizoguchi made in color, I felt like being dropped lost in somewhere. Also, there is only few long takes, culminating in my disappointment that, like Ozu, Mizoguchi's influence was declining at the end of his career.

    Although not really true to its original text, the film can be described as one of the closest adaptations. Particularly, I think the performance are magnificent, with some details to its setting while constantly putting the angles of each shot to fill up the scene. The technical setting, however, doesn't live up to my expectation; I think since it's the second film Mizoguchi made in color, I felt like being dropped lost in somewhere. Also, there is only few long takes, culminating in my disappointment that, like Ozu, Mizoguchi's influence was declining at the end of his career.

  • Sep 24, 2009

    A fine samurai epic by Kenji Mizoguchi, somewhat light on action but full of spectacle. The theme of bureaucrats vs. soldiers is a timely one, as is the theme of religious superstition vs. martial reality. But Mizoguchi doesn't let the film lapse into didacticism; one is kept very much intrigued by the clash of egos--the haughty courtiers vs. the humble Tairas--and the twists of plot--the question of Kiyomori's parentage. Raizo Ichikawa's passionate Kiyomori contrasts well with Ichijiro Oya's strong, silent Tadamori, who is cruelly treated by his superiors-in-law-only, yet never allows anger or frustration to overtake him.The early color (this was made just a year after the first Japanese color film) is painterly; the design is, as expected, quite lovely. A slightly abrupt ending aside, it's a near-great film.

    A fine samurai epic by Kenji Mizoguchi, somewhat light on action but full of spectacle. The theme of bureaucrats vs. soldiers is a timely one, as is the theme of religious superstition vs. martial reality. But Mizoguchi doesn't let the film lapse into didacticism; one is kept very much intrigued by the clash of egos--the haughty courtiers vs. the humble Tairas--and the twists of plot--the question of Kiyomori's parentage. Raizo Ichikawa's passionate Kiyomori contrasts well with Ichijiro Oya's strong, silent Tadamori, who is cruelly treated by his superiors-in-law-only, yet never allows anger or frustration to overtake him.The early color (this was made just a year after the first Japanese color film) is painterly; the design is, as expected, quite lovely. A slightly abrupt ending aside, it's a near-great film.

  • May 12, 2009

    Dommage que je n'ai pas tout compris a l'histoire. Je devrai le revoir pour etre sur de bien apprecier le film. Au demeurant, un magnifique jeu sur les couleurs, un discours social assez pesant aussi mais qui a au moins le merite d'etre clair. Il y a une multitude de themes ici : la filiation, la politique, l'emancipation des femmes, la religion, le marxisme... Et heureux de voir que Mizoguchi était aussi bon dans les portraits d'hommes que de femmes.

    Dommage que je n'ai pas tout compris a l'histoire. Je devrai le revoir pour etre sur de bien apprecier le film. Au demeurant, un magnifique jeu sur les couleurs, un discours social assez pesant aussi mais qui a au moins le merite d'etre clair. Il y a une multitude de themes ici : la filiation, la politique, l'emancipation des femmes, la religion, le marxisme... Et heureux de voir que Mizoguchi était aussi bon dans les portraits d'hommes que de femmes.