For once, I'll write a proper movie review, here ya go. :P
During the early 1900s all the way until the late 1960s Japan was full of rebellion and revolution. The youth was united and the violent demonstrations ravaged throughout the cities. One of the biggest, with many hundreds of thousands of demonstrators, went on for months. The Molotov cocktails flew through the air, as well as stones and other sharp projectiles. Different structures of society were at this time a big issue and the revolutionists had big ideas. Anarchy, communism, free sexuality, etc, played a big part in the whole riot. During the big earthquake in 1923 Japan's secret police supposedly got rid of a few people they didn't like, some of them being revolutionary leaders, young students with different ideas than the leaders of society.
The reason the revolutions eventually ended was the companies changed view on 'revolutionary behavior'. When it all began the companies had nothing against hiring former activists, seeing as they were good leaders and the company could benefit from them. Their views must have changed though, and a few decades later their opinion was the opposite. There was even a law in japan at the time that companies could refuse a person a job simply because that person had been active in various rebellions earlier. This noticeably scared the Japanese youngsters, and most cooled down.
In the end of the 1960s, when the revolutions were slowly coming to an end, this movie was created.
It was highly controversial at the time, and because of this, much material supposed to be in it was removed. Now, in modern uncensored society, these removed sections can be displayed again, and therefore the shortened three hour movie suddenly gains one entire hour. I must admit that it did get pretty boring at times. The movie is, if you are unaware of the underlying meanings, completely random as well, and at times very slow. It's abstractly filmed and there is no steady plot.
I didn't understand half of what was going on in the movie, and the other half could have had many different meanings. In general though, it features two separate stories, one in the past and one in the present. The story in the past features a revolutionary figure, his 3 lovers, and his constant deaths (which I assume symbolize the revolutions and their constant defeats, but never giving up completely). The present story is about a prostitute, a young student, and the filming of both a documentary about the past revolution and crazy imaginative chitchat about the present. In the end the movie director hangs himself and a photo is taken of all the dead people from the past story.
It really isn't a movie that can be explained, so you should watch it and get your own opinion on it. It's in black and white though, and very long, so all shallow inpatient action-obsessed Americans, look the other way, if you're looking for a massacre there won't be any in this. In terms of art it's a masterpiece, and even the music is surprisingly good for it's time. Eros is the name of the god of love btw, and probably symbolizes the views on lawless relationships of this time. Overall, a great piece of art, but definitely not a movie you'll have the patience to watch twice, at least not me.
rated 4/5: fo shizzle
It's the first movie I ever reviewed here in full. A movie I initially watched for university - for a Japanese class I unfortunately didn't complete all the way. I stumbled upon it by chance again, didn't remember a thing about it but the review, and figured I'd give it a new view.
Will the hairs on your leg continue to grow after you die? Is he really just a duck? Those are the kinds of mortal dilemmas this movie raises.
Two parallel lives. The mother and the daughter? The new and the old world? Two worlds collide? And a man with no future. A woman with lust. Pleasure and chaos. Contrasts and highlights. Woman and man. Fire that burns. Worlds intertwine.
It's a creative kind of abstraction you don't see enough of these days. I need to get back more to movies like this... though at the same time I question my incentives. When there's little action? When it's easier to understand something obvious? When we live in a society where attention spans have grown short and the speed of life progressively increases?
It's easier to consume simplicity. Idiocy. No revolutions then.
There's not a lot of Eros here btw. Nor Massacre. Yet it still feels right.
rated 3.5/5: not bad at all
It seems I may have appreciated this more at an age when I was probably too young to too. Did I just act like it? Did I really? Did I have more patience then? This time I'm not even watching the extended version...
I need to see this again in another decade or so, and see how I am then.
See if this movie still resonates. If I am who I was again then.