Director: Seijun Suzuki
Runtime: 139 min
Language: Japanese with English subtitles
“Why do dreams have to end?… If we never had to wake up it wouldn’t be a dream any more.”
Wandering playwright Matsuzaki chances upon a mysterious spectral woman, Shinsuke. He follows her to Kanazawa without realising that she might possibly be married to Tamawaki, his eccentric patron who increasingly taunts him with his fiendish psychological games. Sharing thematic links with Zigeunerweisen, released just one year prior, the film embodies a realm where the living, dead, real and imagined are enmeshed.
Based on early 20th century writer Kyoka Izumi’s book of the same name, the second instalment in Seijun Suzuki’s loose trilogy of films set in Japan’s Taisho era, Kagero-za is a cryptic mystery that confounds the viewer more and more as it unfolds.
For the full Retrospective: Seijun Suzuki programme, please click here.
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