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Feature Four Frames

Relationships Between Humans and Nature in The Land of Hope

Shot a few months after the triple disaster that hit Japan’s Eastern Pacific Coast in March 2011 – an earthquake followed by a tsunami and core meltdowns in three reactors at the nuclear power plant in the Fukushima Prefecture – Sion Sono’s The Land of Hope (Kibo no kuni, Japan, 2012) addresses a great variety […]

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Feature

On Seeing and Being Overlooked: Clint Eastwood and the Academy Awards

Twenty-two years after his directorial debut Play Misty for Me (1971), Clint Eastwood was for the first time nominated by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in the category Best Director, and for the first time one of his films was nominated for Best Picture. His Western Unforgiven (1992) won both awards, and […]

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Feature

Playing with Genre Devices: Hideo Gosha’s Three Outlaw Samurai

Continuing In our new article series, in which writers select and discuss great director debuts to explore the possible origins of recurring themes or stylistic approaches, that often help to define the uniqueness of these one-of-a-kind filmmakers.

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Director Debut Feature

Becoming Akira Kurosawa: Sanshiro Sugata

In a new article series, writers select and discuss great director debuts to explore the possible origins of recurring themes or stylistic approaches that often help to define the uniqueness of these one-of-a-kind filmmakers.

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Feature News

Take 3: Andrea Grunert’s Favourite Films of 2021

Some of The Big Picture’s regular contributors share their choices for the best films of 2021. Part 1. Annette (dir. Leos Carax)The tone of this film is set in the opening sequence, with shots of director Leos Carax and the Mael brothers, Ron and Russell, who wrote the film score. Annette is a highly self-reflexive […]

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Double Bill Feature

Double Bill: Rashomon & After Life

It is perhaps unusual to deal with Akira Kurosawa’s masterpiece Rashomon (Japan, 1950) and another film in such a short article. However, when I watched Hirokazu Kore-Eda’s After Life (Wandafaru raifu, Japan, 1998), I was immediately struck by the parallels between this film and Rashomon. Both deal with memory, the relativity of all things, and […]

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Feature

A journey into silence in François Rotger’s The Passenger

Following the young yakuza Kohji (Yusuke Iseya) from Japan to Canada, the action of François Rotger’s The Passenger (2005) takes place on two continents. Kohji, who has fallen out of favour with his mentor Naoki Sando (Yosuke Natsuki) because the latter surprised him in bed with his daughter Hiroko (Kumi Kaneko), is given a chance […]

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Feature Four Frames

Four Frames: The Park family in Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite

The impoverished Kim family – father Ki-taek (Song Kang-ho), mother Chung-sook (Jang Hye-jin), daughter Ki-jung (Park So-dam) and son Ki-woo (Choi Woo-shik) – infiltrate one by one the household of the wealthy Parks. The Parks – father Dong-ik (Lee Sun-kyun), mother Yeon-gyo (Cho Yeo-jeong), daughter Da-hye (Jung  Ji-so) and son Da-song (Jung Hyeon-jun) – are […]

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Feature

Rebirth and reconciliation in Kon Ichikawa’s The Burmese Harp

After the capitulation of the Empire of Japan on 15 August 1945, Private Mizushima (Shoji Yasui) does not join the rest of his former unit in a British prisoner-of-war-camp in the Burmese countryside but becomes a Buddhist monk. The story of the young soldier who decides to stay in Burma after the war in order […]