Kon Ichikawa Tom Milne - Essay

Tom Milne

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

First impressions can be misleading, and there is something very wrong with the image of Kon Ichikawa arrived at mainly by way of The Burmese Harp [1956], Conflagration [1958] and Fires on the Plain [1959]—as a man obsessed by human suffering and expressing his pity through a series of long, slow, painful, humanistic affirmations. Ichikawa is obsessed by suffering all right, but he is not a humanist in any modern sense of the word…. [The] humanistic definition imposes much too narrow limits, and could only grapple with a film like The Key [1959] by sweeping its almost mockingly flippant final sequence tidily away under the carpet as "silly"….

[The Ichikawa hero] is...

(The entire section is 1195 words.)