Kon Ichikawa David Williams - Essay

David Williams

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

Despite its period setting An Actor's Revenge (Yukinojo Henge) seems to have been an exception to some [generalizations on Japanese cinema]. Even among the more sympathetic reviews in this country a predominant impression was one of remoteness…. The reluctance expressed by some people about taking the film on its own terms might almost have resulted from the conviction that the life of the sexually ambiguous actor in the early nineteenth century was a phenomenon of modern Japan—that familiarity was necessary for understanding. Whereas strangeness is part of what Ichikawrity saw in it too, however local the history. If his treatment of this strange hero and his predicament is sympathetic, then that is the...

(The entire section is 936 words.)