Ok, so I got the box set with his, saying his because I don’t know how to spell his name (Teshighara?) And last night when deciding what I was going to watch I picked “Woman in the Dunes” mostly because it was nominated for a few Academy Awards and I figured it would be best to start with.
To my extreme surprise I was captivated by this film, completely! I thought it was absolutely brilliant. The story was outstanding and the photography was fabulous.
Anyways, did anyone else feel the same way? I attempted to see how it was rated on here and was very surprised to see it isn’t even on here. So that led me to think if other people even think it is a “masterpiece.” I have not been so pleasantly surprised by a film sense “The Lives of Others.”
Yes it is.
Yes, very much so.
They showed this on PBS when I was about 10 or 11, and I couldn’t peel myself away. When I saw it years later as an adult, I found it to be even better.
I just ordered this recently so I should be able to watch it pretty soon!
great movie. even better book (glad i read it before the movie). that whole box is great.
Yes! Great film
Yes great film!
This is one that Ebert turned me on to with his great movies series. Here’s an excellent essay he wrote about the film:http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19980201/REVIEWS08/401010314/1023
I’d agree it’s a masterpiece because I haven’t watched it in years and I still think about it. The story is timeless and there’s real wisdom in it about the seeming futility of life.
It’s definitely Teshigahara’s best film, of course he doesn’t have the biggest oeuvre. Pitfall was a disappointment for me, but Face of Another is a brilliant exploration of identity and Antonio Gaudi is an exceptional documentary minus the irritating score. Teshigahara turned me onto the Japanese New Wave and I’ve been hooked since, really looking forward to the Imamura box set.
Teshigahara is a great filmmaker, Always searching for new forms of expression, his WOMAN IN THE DUNES is a very solid exposition of avant garde and philosophical queries about the human existence.
Absolutely a masterpiece. I hardly took time to blink when I saw this..
Has anyone read any Kobo Abe? I think both Woman in the Dunes and The Face of Another are examples of good books amplified and elevated into even better films, but I’d highly recommend Secret Rendezvous.. great bit of surrealistic craziness..
Yes, Mr. King.
I further suggest THE ARK SAKURA
Christopher – Great, I just picked that up!
M A S T E R P I E C E !
Definitely among the all-time greats.
Mr King: I think the books for both films bring out different levels that the films can only allude. Strongly suggest anyone interested in the film read the Kobe Abe book for Woman in the Dunes. In the film, you did get the story, rather literally told, but you miss out on many other levels that were suggested by the book. For example, Abe gets into a whole scientific analysis of the sand and sand dune, sand used as a metaphor, that the film can only suggest. Face of Another I thought a more successful adaptation. I thoroughly enjoyed the film versions of each, but do read the book for Women in the Dunes to see what I mean. Kobe Abe was a great Japanese writer, thoroughly familiar with European literature of his time, especially the French existentialists. His writing reminds me a bit of Camus – very allegorical. You can see this in the film versions. It is obvious that Teshigahara and Abe were on very similar wavelengths.
I read Woman in the Dunes and saw the film and felt that I enjoyed the film more than I enjoyed the book, although both were great. The most important part of the story to me is the atmosphere and claustrophobia that it creates. I think that the film got these aspects across perfectly and with a visual flair that the book, obviously, did not. Abe may be a good writer, but his writing is not as captivating as Teshigahara’s images. That being said, the book is certainly worth a look because of the detail that a novel allows that a film can’t really contain. As a lover of film more than a lover a literature, I’m probably just biased.
Is there anything more tedious than existential allegory?
WOMAN IN THE DUNES IS A MASTERPIECE!
Petrocephalon: Yes, a tendentious posting.
It is not the best Teshigahara (too much Nouvelle Vague), but it is an original, daring, good film.
The film is on the site, and it’s very highly rated. I need to see it.
Interestingly enough, I not only just recently got to see this (for the first time) at a local theatrical showing, but read the book right afterward. Indeed, indeed, indeed—some massive classic action here. Very impressed with both works.
An amazing film. My favorite in the box set for sure. I’ve been meaning to read the novel too.
A very good picture; Andrei Tarkovsky even pick it as his top 10 favorites.
I was tickled to discover I’m not alone. The video essay accompanying the Criterion DVD quotes a couple paragraphs from a scathing review by Arthur Schlesinger. An interesting tidbit, also from the video essay, is that Glenn Gould claimed to have watched the movie 100 times.
Can’t wait to get his box set, I really want to see this movie. I’ve heard about it for so long it seems like it’s time for me to check it out. This is a film that always gets studied in film classes everywhere, and I’m sure for good reason.
I watched Pitfall, Woman in the Dunes, and the Face of Another all pretty close to each other and was in complete awe. I saw them all pretty close together which made for a magnificent viewing experience. Picking a favorite of the three is extremely hard for me to do. The music in all three, all by Takemitsu, is so chilling and perfect it creates a viewing experience that is extremely captivating. I might have to pick the Face of Another over Woman in the Dunes though… Depending on the mood I’m in. The office in the Face of Another is something I will never forget!
Awesomely good but bettered by the earlier Pitfall.