tungwaiyip.info

home

about me

links

Blog

< August 2008 >
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
      1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31      

past articles »

Click for San Francisco, California Forecast

San Francisco, USA

 

Movie Review - Ballad of Narayama

Ballad of Narayama (1983)
Director: Shohei Imamura

The Ballad of Narayama is set in a remote village in Japan. There was a tradition that before a parent reaches the age of 70, the son will bring her on the back to a remote mountain, where she will let die alone, so as not be become a burden to the family in this very deprived village. Orin was 69. She was preparing for her journey. She reminds her son Tatsuhei not to behave like his father, who 30 years ago has evaded the duty of carrying his own mother to the mountain and brought disgrace to the whole family.

20 years after my first viewing of this film I have come to know director Shohei Imamura a little better. I have also paid more attention to the social theme depicted. Besides this mountain ritual, the village also harbors a great deal of brutality, which are often codified into traditions. In this world they are all part of a population control scheme. Just being the second born son relegate one to an underclass who would lose the right to marriage and starting one's own family. The problem of second son is sometimes avoided at the start by infanticide. Far from an idyllic village, this can also be a very ugly place. Scarcity can bring out the worst in human.

The journey into the mountain was long and arduous. As dictated by tradition, mother and son spent the last hours together almost without a word. Still you can see the love between them. She refuse the rice ball offered and insist the son should have it, perhaps just like the old days. The mother settled in the valley with nothing but a straw mat. It was a gracious self-sacrifice that was so moving.

2008.08.15 [] - comments

 

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

past articles »

 

BBC News

 

Trump dismisses North Korean tests of 'some small weapons' (26 May 2019)

 

German Jews warned not to wear kippas after rise in anti-Semitism (26 May 2019)

 

Raab and Leadsom join race for UK Tory leadership (25 May 2019)

 

Papua New Guinea Prime Minister Peter O'Neill resigns (26 May 2019)

 

Saudi women runners push boundaries on the streets (25 May 2019)

 

Divorce referendum: Ireland votes to liberalise laws (26 May 2019)

 

Everest: British man among latest mountain deaths (25 May 2019)

 

Rescued hiker: 'It came down to life and death and I had to chose' (26 May 2019)

 

Russia ordered to release Ukraine sailors (25 May 2019)

 

Israel protests: Thousands rally against Netanyahu immunity (25 May 2019)

more »

 

SF Gate

 

New Coke was a debacle. It’s coming back. Blame Netflix (25 May 2019)

 

Best headphones from to (25 May 2019)

 

Vice tries to turn the page by making content for others (25 May 2019)

 

CEOs get ,000 pay raise, leaving workers further behind (24 May 2019)

 

Theme park attendance crosses half-billion mark for 1st time (24 May 2019)

 

Authorities raid 247 Colorado homes growing black market pot (24 May 2019)

more »


Site feed Updated: 2019-May-26 00:00