Following the collapse of his clan, unemployed samurai Hanshiro Tsugumo (Tatsuya Nakadai) arrives at the manor of Lord Iyi, begging to commit ritual suicide on his property. Iyi’s clansmen, believing the desperate ronin is merely angling for charity, try to force him to eviscerate himself—but they have underestimated his honor and his past. Winner of the 1963 Cannes Film Festival’s Special Jury Prize, Masaki Kobayashi’s Harakiri is a scathing denouncement of feudal authority and hypocrisy. —The Criterion Collection
Masaki Kobayashi (小林 正樹, Kobayashi Masaaki, February 14, 1916–October 4, 1996) was a Japanese director.
Among his films is Kwaidan (1965), a collection of four ghost stories drawn from the book by Lafcadio Hearn, each of which has a surprise ending.
Kobayashi also directed The Human Condition, a trilogy on the effects of World War II on a Japanese pacifist and socialist. The total length of the films is over 9 hours. Other notable films include Harakiri (1962) and Samurai Rebellion (1967). Harakiri won him an award at the 1963 Cannes Film Festival, solidifying his place in the history of cinema.
He was also a candidate for directing the Japanese sequences for Tora! Tora! Tora! (1970) but instead Kinji Fukasaku and Toshio Masuda were chosen.
Kobayashi, himself a pacifist, was drafted into the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II, but refused to fight and refused promotion to a rank higher than private. —Wikipedia
As the NYFF celebrates its 50th year, a look at the posters from the films that made up its first incarnation in 1963.
Space and movement are at the center of the anything-goes auteur’s new film.
On the week that Takashi Miike’s Hara-Kiri is released in the US, a look back at posters for Kobayashi’s deathless original.
New discs from Flicker Alley, Edition Filmmuseum, the BFI, Masters of Cinema and Criterion.
Updated through 5/21. "Miike's gonzo efforts have assaulted the fest circuit for over a decade, and at least one, Gozu, appeared in the Director
With Movie Poster of the Week mastermind Adrian Curry on vacation this week, we thought we'd give a little homage to some of the films from
The first thing that comes in mind when i think about this movie, is the mindblowing performance of Tatsuya Nakadai. His eyes crushed me, the face, and that slow and tired voice. I think he did a very… read review
and my big question raise: how come Masaki Kobayashi become the lesser known japanese director,overshadowed by Kurosawa? only by seeing this truly epic masterpiece,i already fall in love with his great… read review
Masaki Kobayashi’s HARAKIRI has less in common with Akira Kurosawa’s period adventure films than it does with the modernist films of the 60s like SALVATORE GIULIANO, IL CONFORMISTA or even John Ford… read review