Nagisa Oshima

Nagisa Ôshima – Ai to kibô no machi AKA A Street of Love and Hope (1959)

Nagisa Oshima’s first feature film, A STREET OF LOVE AND HOPE paints a biting portrait of poverty and class difference through the life of a young boy who sells pigeons on the street. The radical and unflinching politics that would become Oshima’s hallmark are here on display in his earliest work. Read More »

Nagisa Ôshima – Shiiku AKA The Catch (1961)

The Catch 飼育 (1961) : Based on a prize-winning novella by Kenzaburo Oe -– Oshima removes the homoeroticism of the source but adds his typical touch of incestuous desire –- The Catch is set during the final days of World War II. A black GI is captured in a remote Japanese farming village, and becomes a pawn in a power struggle between various factions. As the villagers squabble over their “catch,” Oshima explores subjects that would become his hallmarks – Japanese hypocrisy, racism, xenophobia, insularity, scapegoating – with detached ferocity. Read More »

Nagisa Oshima – Shinjuku dorobo nikki AKA Diary of a Shinjuku Thief (1968)

When a thief is caught stealing form a book shop by one of its employees, the two embark on an unusual, erotic adventure. Read More »

Nagisa Ôshima – Gohatto AKA Taboo (1999)

Gohatto stars Beat Takeshi, Asano Tadanobu and a fifteen-year-old Matsuda Ryuhei as the beautiful son of a well-to-do merchant who joins the Shinsen Gumi militia in Kyoto for the “right to kill,” and ends up doing so both by his sword and his good looks. Gohatto explores themes of jealousy, madness and destruction within the context of bushido homoeroticism; not only does this violent love story play out within the bounds of same-sex relationships, but within a single militia. Read More »

Nagisa Ôshima – Natsu no imoto AKA Dear Summer Sister (1972)

“Certainly the oddest Oshima film yet to surface in this country,” was how Vincent Canby, an Oshima champion, characterized Dear Summer Sister when it got its first New York release in 1985, and the film remains quite amazingly strange. Read More »

Nagisa Ôshima – Gishiki AKA The Ceremony (1971)

The film takes place in postwar Japan, following a Japanese clan through their wedding and funeral ceremonies, and the lengths the family goes to preserve their traditions in spite of the damage it causes to the younger generations. Read More »

Nagisa Ôshima – Etsuraku AKA Pleasure of the Flesh (1965)

After killing a man that raped one of his students, teacher Wakizaka finds himself embroiled in a plot being blackmailed into looking after a huge amount of cash. With tensions mounting and anxiety setting in, Wakizaka decides to spend the money, knowing the consequences of his actions will be of the most dire kind. Read More »