sexta-feira, 13 de março de 2009

Why "The Ceremony"?

(Gishiki, 1971)
By Nagisa Oshima

If my last film, The Man Who Left his Will on Film (Tokyo Senso Sengo Hiwa, 1970), has been my own investigation about the problem of death in the 70's, while defining myself as a man of cinema, in The Ceremony (Gishiki, 1971) I tried to examine in the present of the year 1971 the totality of my experiences and my emotions during all those post-war years. After the student protests in 1968 and 69 and their subsequent interruption in 1970 , I think, that the Japanese society should now draw up a balance sheet of these 25 years of the post-war era. The Ceremony is a modest and completely personal answer to this claim.
Why did I respond to this claim through ceremonies?
Because it seems to me that during ceremonies the soul of the Japanese is moved in a particularly delicate and completly different way then in their day-to-day life. However, I think that the particularities of the Japanese soul reveal themselves during ceremonies. This Japanese soul troubles me; troubles me like my own soul, which is moved in the same way.
I can't deny that militarism and xenophobic nationalism, rejected in everyday life through thought and feeling, at last take possession of the souls of the Japanese in an easy and troubling way, the very moment they find themselves in the exceptional situation of a ceremony.

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