Derik Badman's Journal

Content Tagged "Hiroshi Shimizu"

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2019-10-14 08:13

Ended up watching Hiroshi Shimizu's The Masseurs and a Woman from 1938. I've had the Criterion Eclipse set Travels with Hiroshi Shimizu yet never got around to watching all the movies in it. This is a rather short (66 minutes) film that takes place at a mountain resort. Two blind masseurs show up for the season and one of them falls in a love with a woman from Tokyo. Lots of tracking shots, which apparently was a Shimizu tradmark. The film starts with a series of long tracking shots in front of the two masseurs as they walk along the road. Shimizu also uses a lot of long take long shots, where you watch people walking or moving about from a distance, like a long scene where the masseur and the woman are standing on a small bridge over some water. They are both in the background, and then, the woman gets up and walks along the bridge. The bridge turns towards the camera at the right of frame, and thus the woman walks into the foreground of the frame.

An enjoyable simple film. It dangled a number of plotlines, and then left most of them unresolved as the characters leaved the resort, but it didn't feel incomplete, as it fit the setting of a place people travel to away from home for short periods. They have some brief moments with new acquaintances, but then their real lives reassert themselves.

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