Zigeunerweisen Screen 4 articles

Zigeunerweisen

1980

Zigeunerweisen Poster
  • Sometimes an actor leaves a room only to be shown in the next shot still sitting there. One argument takes place in and around a spooky tunnel—with the “in” and “around” alternating from moment to moment. This confusing, sometimes baffling style makes it tempting to just throw up your hands, but the beauty of the film lies in its residual effect: peppering the cornea with graffiti while still implanting a complex but unified theme of death, eroticism, and control.

  • This, the film that properly began the second act of Suzuki’s career, finds his tendency to luxuriate in kink intact, though also displays a more solemn side of Suzuki’s art, a film of twilit mahogany sitting rooms which slowly ratchets up the tension to an unnerving climax. He would never after return to the frenzied, electrified creative pace of his mid-’60s creative outburst—but neither would he be tamed.

  • Identities blur (along with the line between the living and the dead) as the film's narrative and conceptual mysteries escalate. Underlying the teasing riddles (did Aoichi borrow the record of Zigeunerweisen or didn't he?) is an aching lament for the sumptuous hybrid culture of the 1920s that was swept away by the militarism of the 1930s.

  • The first chapter in a loosely knit trilogy all set during the affluent, decadent 1920s, and all intensely, drowsily tripped out on reflexive slippage, narrative Dada, and gender-combat ambiguity... Stuck in a seaside village, the two old university cohorts fall for the same grieving geisha, and from there the doppelgänger mistaken identities, wives, children of questionable birth, eyeball-licking foreplay, and languid enigmas proliferate. Astonishingly, it swept the Japanese Academy Awards.

More Links