Recommended top 10: Koji Segawa [JP/ENG]

“I will give [a list of] movies that influenced my work and those movies that impressed me – those unforgettable movies – when I was young.”

Introduction by Koji Segawa

まずはじめに、今回の質問に答えるのはとても難しかったです。なぜなら僕は外国の映画を見ている本数のほうが圧倒的に多く、日本の映画はあまり見ていないからです(2007 年〜2010 年の間に古い日本映画はそれなりの数を見ましたが、それでも他の多くの日本人監督よりは本数を見ていないと思います)。ですのでおすすめ作品というよりは、自分が創作する上で影響を受けたものや、若い頃に見た印象深い(忘れがたい)作品を挙げました。

①・どうしてその映画が好きですか。
②・この映画は貴方にどのような影響を与えましたか。
③・どうしてその映画読者におススメますか。

First of all, it was very difficult to answer the questions. Because [nowadays] I watch infinitely more foreign movies than Japanese movies, which I do not watch often anymore – I saw a number of old Japanese movies between 2007 and 2010, but I still think I haven’t seen more than many other Japanese directors. So rather than [provide] a list of work I recommend, I will give [a list of] movies that influenced my work and those movies that impressed me – those unforgettable movies – when I was young.

① Why do you love these movies?
② How did those movies influence you?
③ Why do you recommend them to our readers?

Koji Segawa’s recommended top 10.

CURE [黒沢清] (1997) by Kiyoshi Kurosawa.

① サスペンスとドラマ、アートが見事なバランスで融合しているから。善悪の概念に収まらない、人間の深層心理や弱さが描かれているところ。
② この映画を見る前は日本映画をあまり見ていなかったのだが、これを見て日本映画の面白さに気づき、その後たくさん見るようになった。映画で描けることに限界はない(描けないことはない)ということに気づいた。cure1
③ 黒沢清監督の現在にまで至る快進撃の始まりの作品だから。

① [I love this movie] because suspense, drama, art are fused together in a splendid balance. It is a place that doesn’t fit in the concept of good and evil and where the deep psyche of humans and their weaknesses are portrayed.
② Before seeing this movie, I did not watch a lot of Japanese movies, but I saw this and became aware of the fun of Japanese movies. After that I started to watch [Japanese movies] a lot. I became aware that there are no limits to what one can portray in movies – there is nothing you can’t portray.
③ [I recommend this work] because, in his oeuvre up until now, it is a work from the beginning of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s accomplishments.

Seance [降霊] (2001) by Kiyoshi Kurosawa.

①人間がお化けを殴る、殴ってもお化けはダメージを受けず、ずっとついてくるという場面が非常に斬新で衝撃的だった。
②自分が作る映画の中での幽霊やホラー的な表現に多大な影響を与えた。
③黒沢清の作品の中で一番好きな作品だから。

① Humans beat the ghosts, even if these ghosts where not damaged by hitting them. The scene of being followed all the time was shocking and very novel.
② This work greatly influenced the expression of ghost and horror in the movies I make.
③[I recommend this work] because it is my most favourite movie of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s oeuvre.

All About Lily Chou-Chou [リリィ・シュシュのすべて] (2001) by Shunji Iwai.

086dfc6bd8a98707624519d3f3f57ae0①90 年代後半の日本はテクノロジーと文化が劇的に変化した一方で、とても陰鬱で恐ろしい出来事がたくさん起こった時代だった。そんな時代の不穏で救いのない空気を見事に表した作品。
②僕がこの映画を見たのもちょうど20 歳頃で、作中で描かれている十代の子どもたちの心理や行動がスッと自分の心の中に入ってきた。完璧な映画ではないかもしれないが、見たタイミングや時期によって人の記憶に強く印象づけられる作品というものがあると思う。
③90 年代の日本(社会や個人)が抱えていた病理、残酷さ、暗さを知ることができる。

① In the latter half of 90’s Japan, technology and culture changed dramatically and a lot of depressing and horrible events happened at that time. [I love this movie because] it expresses the unrest and unrelieved atmosphere of that time.
② I was around twenty when I saw this movie and the psychology and behaviour of teens, as portrayed [in the movie] immediately came into my mind. Although the movie may not be perfect, depending on the time and the timing one sees the movie, I think it is a work that can leave a great impression.
③[I recommend this movie because] it is possible to know the pathology, cruelty, and darkness of 90’s Japan – at the level of society as well as the individual.

A bride for Rip Van Winkle [リップヴァンウィンクルの花嫁] by Shunji Iwai.

jghwul6wffeynoatm2mb5y6vki①物語の構成の見事さ(前半の苦々しさやモヤモヤした部分が、後半のカタルシスへの伏線になっている)、作品や俳優の持つ熱量が、近年の岩井俊二の作品の中では一番で、彼の復活を感じたから。近年の日本映画でもこれだけカタルシスを感じる作品はめったにない。
②映画におけるカタルシスについて考えさせられた。
③俳優の熱量と作り手の本気が高度に融合した作品で、最近岩井俊二の作品を見なくなったという人にこそ見て欲しい。

① [I love] the splendor of the composition of the story – the bitterness of the first half and the murky part, a foreshadowing of the catharsis in the second part. The passion this work and the actor(s) have, is the best among Shunji Iwai’s most recent works, because I felt his comeback. If one considers recent Japanese movies, there are rarely works where you can feel this catharsis.
② [Because of this movie], I was made to think about [showing] catharsis in movies.
③ It is a work where the passion the actors and the creator’s seriousness is highly integrated, so I want people who have recently stopped watching Iwai’s work too see this movie.

The End Of Evangelion [新世紀エヴァンゲリオン劇場版 Air/まごころを、君に] (1997) by Hideaki Anno

①アニメの常識を破り、禁じ手(キャラクターを壊してわざと観客が登場人物を愛せないようにする、感情移入できないようにする)を使いまくっているところ。
②自分がそれまで持っていたアニメの常識、先入観を覆された。作品と作り手の自我やパーソナルな問題との関係について考えるようになった。
③『リリィ・シュシュのすべて』と同じく90 年代の日本(社会や個人)が抱えていた闇、暗さをとてもよく映している。また庵野秀明の作品を『シン・ゴジラ』から見始めた若い人たちにも新鮮に映るだろう。

①[I love this movie because] it breaks the common sense of anime by using a  prohibited technique – destroying the characters on purpose as to prevent the audience from loving them and empathize with them.
② It overturned the common sense and prejudices I had about anime. I began to think about the relationship between the work and the creator’s ego and his personal problems.
③ Like All about Lily Chou-Chou, it truly reflects the embracing darkness and the gloom of 90’s Japan – at the level of society as well as at the level of the individual. For young people, who only started watching Hideaki Anno’s work from Shin-Godzilla (2016), this movie will also feel fresh.

19806kvw3p7fsjpgEVANGELION: 2.0 YOU CAN (NOT) ADVANCE [ヱヴァンゲリヲン新劇場版:破] (2009) by Hideaki Anno

①マリという能天気な新キャラクター(シンジたち過去の登場人物と違い、悩まない、自暴自棄にならない、アイデンティティーに苦しまない)によって、作り手自らが作り出した過去のエヴァンゲリオンの概念を壊し、新たな価値観を提示したところ。アクションシーンもさらに進化していて素晴らしい。
②エヴァンゲリオン旧作と比べ、より外(社会や観客)に向けて作られており、以前は暗い作風だった作り手の、心境の変化や成長を感じられた。
③エヴァンゲリオン旧作と比較して見ると、変化が感じられとても面白い。

① With the new laid-back character called Mari – a character different from those of the pas: not tormented, not despairing, not suffering from identity [problems] – Anno breaks the earlier concept of Evangelion he himself made and present new values. The action scenes became better and are wonderful.
② Compared to the previous Evangelion works, this one is made for the “outside” – society and the audience. I felt the change and the growth in the maker’s state of mind – a maker who had a gloomy style before.
③When you compare it with the older works of Evangelion, you we feel the change and that makes it truly interesting.

Elegant Beast [しとやかな獣] (1962) by Yûzô Kawashima

elegant00016_zps655e80ed.png①狭い団地内を舞台にした構図の斬新さ、会話の凄まじいテンポ。能の音楽とディスコをミックスさせたような切れ味のある場面演出。欲に目がくらみモラルを失っていく現代人の危うさを描いたブラックユーモアも絶品で、90 分があっという間に過ぎていくジェットコースターのような作品。
②僕にとって古い日本映画を見ることは、外国の映画を見るのと同じで、自分の知らない世界を覗き見ているような気分になることが多いが、川島雄三の作品は少し違う。場所や時代が違えども人間の本質、欲望はそれほど変わらないということを思い知らされる。彼の作品は、その時代に当然と思われていた常識やモラルに常に疑いの目線を向けており、現代の日本人が見ても理解、共感できる部分がとても多い。
③川島雄三の作品の中でも一、二を争う傑作で大好きな作品。若尾文子の美しさ、妖艶さもさることながら、一見おしとやかで古風な日本女性に見える山岡久乃が、上品な仮面を捨てて素でいる時の空虚な表情が、ホラー映画のシリアルキラー並に怖く必見。

① [I love this movie because] the novelty of the way the narrow apartment complex was composed into a stage and the amazing tempo of conversations. [Kawashima] directing scenes with sharpness like mixing Noh music and disco music together. The black humor depicting the danger of modern people losing morals by their blind greed is exquisite; it is a work like a roller coaster, over in a blink of an eye.
② For me, looking at old Japanese movies is the same as watching foreign movies – both make me feel like I’m peeping into a world I do not know – but the work of Yuzo Kawashima is a bit different. [This movie is] a reminder that the essence and desires of human beings do not change a lot even if the place and time are different. elegant00022_zps8fe7f857His work is always suspicious of common sense and morals that were considered natural for that time. There are so many moments [in the movie] that a contemporary Japanese can understand and sympathize with.
③ In Kawashima’s oeuvre, one or two compete to be my most favourite masterpiece (see below). Despite the captivating beauty of Fumiko Wakao, the first glance of Hisano Yamaoka, who appears to be a ladylike and old fashioned Japanese woman, throws away her elegant mask for an empty facial expression – it is a must-see facial expression much like a serial-killer’s in a horror movie.

A Woman Is Born Twice [女は二度生まれる] (1961) by Yûzô Kawashima.

①人間観察の名人である川島雄三が、芸者や愛人関係などを通して『女』という不思議な生き物の生態を追った傑作。奥行きを効果的に使った多層的な画面構成、人物が縦横無尽に動き回る躍動感のある演出。人間の愛らしさと愚かさを描いた繊細な心理描写など見どころ多数。
②この作品も、古い作品にも関わらず、既成概念やその時代の常識にとらわれておらず、時代を超越して人間の本質が描かれている。人間という存在について深く考えさせられた。
③演出、画作り、テーマなど、川島雄三は自分にとってもっとも完璧に近い監督の一人。特に彼が描く女同士のケンカのシーンは一級品。

① Yuzo Kawashima, a master of human observation, tracks in this masterpiece, through Geisha’s and mistresses, the mode of life of the wondrous living being called woman. By successfully using depth [he] composes multilayered scenes [and creates] a work full of energy as the characters move around without restriction. A great number of subtle psychological descriptions about human love and foolishness are shown.
② Despite this work being old, this work is not caught up in the preconceptions and common sense of that era; the movie depicts the human essence that transcends the time-period. He made me think deeply about the existence of human beings.
③ Directing, screen-composition, and themes, … and so on. Yûzô Kawashima is one of the most perfect coaches for me. Especially the scenes with the female fighter [he portrays]  are first grade items.

Play [遊び] (1971) by Yasuzô Masumura

asobi-aka-play-1971-1①どうかしてるくらいまっすぐで純粋な、しかし抑圧されていて若いエネルギーを持て余している若者たちの、たった一日の運命の恋を描いた、こちらもジェットコースターのようなラブストーリー。心の声がそのまま口から漏れてるのかと思うくらい本音をぶつけ合う、剥き出しの若い二人のやり取りが濃密で目が離せない。関根恵子の初々しさも素晴らしい。
②現実離れした過剰な熱量の描写やセリフが続くが、ずっと主役二人から目が離せない。フィクションの中でしか作り上げることのできない濃密で美しい世界があるということを知った。
③増村が描く過剰で濃密な世界は、現代の映像に慣れた人々には新鮮に映るだろう。圧倒的な熱量と密度で描かれるメロドラマ、ラブストーリーを堪能して欲しい。

①It is a roller-coaster-like love story that depicts the destined love of just one day, between two young people who are almost out of their mind, nevertheless sincerely pure, but who do not know what to do with their suppressed energy. As the voice of the heart as it is almost leaks from their mouths, their real intentions and feelings bumping against each other, one is unable to take one’s eyes off the rich nakedness of their interactions. Keiko Takahashi’s innocence is also wonderful.
② As the speech and portrayal of an excess of passion, as separated from reality, continues, I cannot take my eyes of the two leading characters. [Because of this movie] I learned that one can only built a dense and beautiful world in fiction.
③Yasuzo Musamura’s excessive and dense world will be fresh for the people accustomed to the contemporary movies. I want you to enjoy this melodrama, this love story portrayed with overwhelming passion and density.

Naked Resume: True Story Of Kazuko Shirakawa [実録白川和子 裸の履歴書] (1973) by Chûsei Sone

①赤裸々で剥き出しの人間の生態、奇抜で自由な映像表現など、自分は日活ロマンポルノから多大な影響を受けている。ロマンポルノの代表的な監督だと、神代辰巳を挙げる人は多いと思うが、自分はあえて曽根中生を推したい。その中でも今作は一番自由に作られていて好き。表現の自由さ、下世話さ、面白さが抜群。
②映画の中でどれくらい奇妙なことを描いても良いのか?について考えさせられた。
③曽根中生の作品はほとんど全部好きだが、その中でもこれが一番自由で奇抜な作品だと思った。とにかく奇妙で面白い作品なので見てほしい。

① I’m greatly influenced by Nikkatsu’s Roman Porno; the plain nakedness of humanity’s mode of life, the unconventional and unrestricted filmic expression, … and so on. Many people would choose Tatsumi Kumashiro as a representative of Roman Porno, but I want to recommend Chûsei Sone. Among his works, this one is most freely made – that’s why I love it. The freedom of expression, the juiciness, and the fun are outstanding.
② The movie made me think about how far one can go with depicting strange stuff in movies.
③ I like most of Chusei Sone’s work, but I thought this one was his most free and most unconventional work. Anyway, it is a peculiar and fun movie, so please see it.

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