Tomato kecchappu otei

Arnold M ma_iku at
Tue Oct 8 16:25:18 EDT 2002

>From: Roland Domenig <roland.domenig at>
>the film is included in vol.1 of the "terayama shuji jikken eizo warudo"
>video edition of image forum.

If any of you are planning to buy this, be careful: two versions of the 
film are available in the Image Forum video series.  The version on tape #1 
is the short cut of the film (27 min), apparently the one that went to a 
couple of festivals.  Tape #7 has the "original full-length version" (75 
min, 6500 yen) which was restored from one original print Terayama himself 
had, according to the back of the case.  The "bricks in the underpants" 
episode that Stephen Cremin mentions is a part of the original full-length 
film, but was later cut out and used as short film in itself ("Janken 
senso", 12 min).  "Janken senso" is also on tape #2.  (info at  I think one or two of 
Terayama's other short films also came out of the original cut of "Tomato", 
but I can't remember which ones they were.  

I bought tape #7 for the full-length version, and the picture quality isn't 
very good (a problem with the source, I think).  The picture is very 
overexposed and washed out for most of the film.  It's much easier to see 
where the characters are and what they're doing in the shorter version on 
video #1.  

The movie is a blast, but I actually regret spending so much cash on the 
one VHS tape. Tsutaya in Shinjuku has the whole series so I should have 
just rented it.  I mailed the tape back to the U.S.A., cover art and all 
(the cover art is the least of your worries with this film, believe me...), 
along with all my other videos and books.  I was worried about customs, but 
they never even bothered to check the contents of my boxes.  I'm 
curious--have any other list members here had customs problems shipping 
Japanese videos to the U.S.?  

What's interesting about the Terayama videos is that they make you realize 
just how necessary it is to see the films in a theater.  Shorts like 
"Laura" (or is that "Lola"?) and the triple-screen "Seishonen no tame no 
eiga nyumon" (which is split into three parts on tapes #1, #2 and #4, _and_ 
'projected' together in three small screens within a single frame on video 
#6) left me somewhat unsatisfied, wondering what it would have been like to 
"really" see the films in a theater with an audience.

I don't know of any English script for the film, but the Japanese script is 
included in _Terayama Shuji Zen shinario II_, published by Film Art-sha.

Michael Arnold

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