Boy, 1969

The idiosyncratic color shift of the title sequence in Nagisa Oshima’s trenchant and acerbic coming-of-age tale, Boy provides an incisive metaphor for the imbalanced natural order that lies beneath the veneer of the modernized, national recovery of post-occupation Japanese society, as a seemingly de-saturated, black and white Japanese flag prominently placed in the center of […]

Death by Hanging, 1968

A clinically presented series of stark white, unembellished placards illustrates the sobering statistical data for the overwhelming public sentiment against the abolition of the death penalty as an off-screen narrator (Nagisa Oshima) provides a snide, but impassioned rebuttal to popular opinion by presenting a objective documentary of the austere and impersonal milieu associated with the […]

Cruel Story of Youth, 1960

In the film’s chaotically fragmented and disorienting opening sequence, an over-animated, carefree adolescent student named Makoto (Kuwano Miyuki) recklessly runs up alongside a series of randomly selected vehicles caught in traffic and uses her disarming joviality to engage the unsuspecting driver into a polite, subtly flirtatious conversation before to attempting to ingratiate herself into obtaining […]