Double Suicide



Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh100%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright86%
IMDb Rating7.6102435

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN

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720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
954.22 MB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 43 min
P/S 16 / 27
1.73 GB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 43 min
P/S 9 / 37

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by howard.schumann8 / 10

Intensely emotional

Similar to the fate of the star-crossed lovers in Romeo and Juliet, Double Suicide by Masahiro Shinoda is Shakespearean in its theme of lovers who are forbidden by society's rules to be together and can only find fulfillment in death. The film is based on a 1720 Kabuki (or Bunraku) puppet play, The Love Suicide at Amijima by Monzaemon Chikamatsu, who has been called the Japanese Shakespeare. As the film begins, black-clad puppeteers known as kurago are busy assembling puppets and setting the stage for the drama. Soon live actors replace the puppets but the puppeteers remain in the background, silent participants changing the sets, assembling the props, and "pulling the strings", representing perhaps the inexorable hand that guides our lives or as Shinoda has said the `thin line between truth and falsehood". The film is intensely emotional and has the feel of grand opera but the puppeteers make clear the artificiality of the drama and keep us distanced.

In the film, Jihei (Kichiemon Nakamura) is a paper merchant who is married with two young children. Though he loves his wife Osan, he has been secretly seeing a courtesan Koharu (Shima Iwashita who also plays Osan) for two and a half years. He has dissipated his fortune at the brothel and now cannot raise enough money to redeem Koharu from her enslavement to the brothel's owner (Kamatari Fujiwara). Though his family finds out about their romance and Osan tries to persuade Jehei to sever the relationship, it becomes apparent that the bond is unbreakable and we watch helplessly as the inevitable tragedy unfolds. Double Suicide has a haunting score by Toru Takemitsu and amazing black and white photography, shown in sharp detail and contrast in the new Criterion DVD, and is highly recommended for a unique viewing experience.

Reviewed by claudio_carvalho8 / 10

Original Theatrical Japanese Shakespearian Love Story

In 18th Century in Japan, the paper merchant Jihei (Kichiemon Nakamura) falls in love for the courtesan Koharu (Shima Iwashita),but he can not afford to redeem her from her master and owner of the brothel, since he spent all his money in the place with Koharu. Jihei's wife Osan tries to keep her husband with his two children and asks Koharu to leave him. The two lovers make a pact of double suicide to escape from the rigid rules of the Japanese society of 1720 and stay together after death.

"Shinjû: Ten no Amijima" is an extremely original movie, based on a Japanese puppeteers theater (called "Bunraku") popular play by Monzaemon Chikamatsu. The Shakespearian story of an impossible love is theatrically performed, inclusive with the presence of the "kuragos", the puppet masters that conduct the puppets in the "Bunraku". Although being much related to Japanese culture, this movie is a great experience for those like me that have interest in other cultures. My vote is eight.

Title (Brazil): "Duplo Suicídio em Amijima" ("Double Suicide in Amikima")

Reviewed by kaworu-310 / 10

Truly one-of-a-kind

"Double Suicide" is a bunraku puppet performance at its core, with perhaps the only difference being that actual humans play the roles of the puppets.

The puppet masters, their faces covered with thin black silk masks, move around props, rapidly change the minimal sets, never interfering with the plot or the characters, yet moving them forward and cooperating with them in a way that is not at all distracting.

The puppets themselves are finely crafted, and the characters that they play present a depth of humanity that is rare in all forms of staged entertainment (whether it be a movie, a play, or the like). Being puppets, however, the viewer is left feeling detached from them, even if there is a sense of humanity present that one can grasp. Oddly enough, that is a good thing in this case - it increases the sense of how the only thing that one could do when the tragic events unfold is to watch.

This is not a film for all tastes, obviously. But the same statement can apply to the bunraku puppet play that this movie is based on. This performance is pulled off with perfection, and I highly recommend it.

10 out of 10

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