AW: Lost Mishima film foretelling suicide found

Roland Domenig roland.domenig
Sat Aug 20 08:50:20 EDT 2005

The discovery of the allegedly oldest Japanese animation film is a great news and a much greater sensation than the ?discovery? of Mishima?s ?lost? film Yukoku. It was an open secret that Mishima?s widow didn?t destroy the negative of the film and that not all copies were disposed of. In the past years there have been efforts to persuade the producer to release the film on DVD ? also in view of the high number of bootleg videos, mostly in a very terrible quality that obscure the artistic intention of the film. It is good to hear, however, that Shinchosha finally plans a release of the film (and of 40 more films) on DVD. 

What is disturbing, however, is that the film is still seen as ?fortelling? Mishima?s death four years later. Interesting in this respect is the short essay ?Yukoku no nazo (The Mystery of Yukoku)? in the Art Theatre program when the film was released by ATG, in which Mishima states that he?d regard the film a failure if only the slightest shadow of the writer Mishima Yukio were seen in the protoganist of the film Takeyama Shinji. It is for sure tempting to compare the suicide of Mishima in the film with his real life suicide, but I think we should be careful to see the film only in retrospective of Mishima?s death and should rather try to judge it from a prospective perspective, that is from his writings before the film and the discourse in 1966 when the film was released.

Roland Domenig
Institute of East Asian Studies
Vienna University

-----Urspr?ngliche Nachricht-----
Von: owner-KineJapan at im Auftrag von David Lewis
Gesendet: Sa 20.08.2005 02:27
An: KineJapan at
Betreff: Lost Mishima film foretelling suicide found
the subject line says it all
some details at :

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