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"Onibaba" (1964)


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Kaneto Shindo's "Onibaba" (1964) starts off as historical drama about a young woman and her mother-in-law who will do anything to survive in war torn feudal Japan.  The women murder soldiers and sell their belongings for food.  The women get along until the return of Hachi who tells them their son/husband has died in battle.  He also unleashes passionate desire in the women.  The mother in law encounters as mysterious samurai wearing a demon mask which leads to a terrifying climax.  Shindo really knows how to use the frame and his cinematographer creates haunting black and white images. The tall reeds by the river become another character watching as the humans go mad with lust.   The sequence in which the young woman runs into the demon is the stuff of cinematic nightmares and reminds me of the best of the Val Lewton films .

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58 minutes ago, Arsan404 said:

Great horror movie. The images range from beautiful to terrifying and are unforgettable.

I used to have the movie on VHS. I need to replace it with the DVD.

The print on you tube is not bad but I want to see this on DVD or Blu Ray better yet on a big screen.

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19 hours ago, LawrenceA said:

The first time I watched it I thought it was one of the most beautiful B&W films that I'd ever seen. I want to watch it again. I have the Criterion DVD, but it needs a Blu ray upgrade. 

That's what I'm waiting for

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