Saturday, November 19, 2011

HANA-BI (Japanese) (1997)

A distinct and unusual style and form of narration- editing pervades in the film. Mute or slow motion violence punctures the screen while narrating a fragmentary plot about a sincere cop whose wife is going to die soon due to cancer. He got loan money from notorious Japanese criminal syndicate ‘Yakuza’ and the goons keep on messing his life with threats. Meanwhile a mid age colleague cop gets shot on job and now his life on wheelchair is drawing surreal drawings…some beautiful…some suicidal!

What is the most beautiful about this otherwise ordinary film is the way director and actor Takeshi Kitano used the form to say something so ordinary in extraordinary way on the screen. Rarely do we see the combination of violence and visual aesthetics runs hand in hand like poetry on screen. Those creative surrealistic paintings that his colleague cop made are absolutely treat to your eyes. The real artist behind them is none other than Kitano himself who made most of them when he was on hospital bed as paralytic patient for short term after meeting a severe accident. The soothing and emotive background score is another evocative part of the film and Kitano made us feel the sublime joy and melancholy of husband and wife in their wandering moments of togetherness in the lap of nature, far away from madding crowd! The end is something so dark and yet so graceful; this happens rare in cinema.

So far my most impressive Kitano film.


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