Sunday, December 17, 2017

Japanese film: Miss Hokusai


After Miss Hokusai
.
Laurent: I know some artists and they are…
.
Ursula: Different?
.
Laurent: Hmm, they often don’t say much, liking to appear mist-wreathed. Talk too much, the aura fades.
.
Ursula: I know, the lustre rusts.
.
Laurent: They can be enigmatic and speak in epithets. If they gesture, it’s quick and dismissive.
.
Ursula: Artists simplify, and ukiyoe was an ultimate simplicity.
.
O-Ei itinerant
Laurent: So it was with O-Ei apparently, as Hara had it her appear that is.
.
Ursula: Then after her father died, it’s said she became itinerant. Seeking a simple life. “With two brushes and our chopsticks, we can live anywhere.”
.
Laurent: The father dies, and the child grows stronger? But in this case, it seems she rather vanished.
_____
Voice-over
.
Sometimes not being there precipitates something serendipitous. Keiichi Hara himself vanished for some months in production, worried about doing justice to Sugiura's Sarusuberi, and causing some creative dilemmas, ultimately well-solved by disciples.
...

Monday, December 11, 2017

Japanese film: Ryuichi Sakamoto: CODA

Post-Fukushima: Sakamoto is playing on a beaten-up piano…
Playing on the corpse of
a drowned piano...
.
Sakamoto: It’s the corpse of a drowned piano. A black wall of water came over the pine trees. The room was flooded, the piano drowned. But some sound still comes out of it.
.
Narrator: Then there was the MRI.
.
Sakamoto: Stage 3, throat cancer. The treatment has extended my life. I don’t know how many years I have left, 20 or 10, or maybe there’ll be a relapse, but I want to be able to work.
.
Narrator: Music.
.
Sakamoto: And incorporate natural sounds too: leaves, rain, birdsong. Beginning on the piano, then recording using all these objects here, windows, bottles, buckets, cymbals, violin and computer.
_________
Voice-over

A coda is a concluding movement. We hope that this documentary CODA, is not a finale for Ryuichi Sakamoto, that he will give us more memorable music. None of us know how long we have. But Sakamoto is an inspiration when he is determined to produce “meaningful work I’m not ashamed to leave behind.”
...