Empire of Passion

September 8, 2023
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Film past event

Ai no Borei

Commemorating 10 years since Nagisa Oshima’s Passing—35mm Presentation. Set in the chilly autumnal air of a rural mountain village, Oshima’s follow-up to his taboo-breaking In the Realm of the Senses summons a morbid tale of passion and guilt at the turn of the 20th century. The illicit coupling of young war veteran Toyoji (Tatsuya Fuji) and Seki, the wife of a rickshaw driver, drives the adulterous pair to murder as they succumb to their own carnal desires and ecstasy—an act that leave’s Seki’s husband thrown into an abandoned well. Years pass and the two find themselves haunted by the crime just as the ghost of the dead rickshaw man begins to appear. Beautifully lensedearning Oshima the Best Director Award at the 1978 Cannes Film Festivaland with a score by Toru Takemitsu, Empire of Passion is Oshima’s sole kaidan (ghost story).

Dir. Nagisa Oshima, 1978, 108 min., 35mm, color, in Japanese with English subtitles. With Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Tatsuya Fuji, Takahiro Tamura.

Image: © Argos Films / Oshima Productions 1976.

Japan Society programs are made possible by leadership support from Booth Ferris Foundation, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. Film programs are generously supported by ORIX Corporation USA, public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and Yen Press. Endowment support is provided by the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Endowment Fund and The John and Miyoko Davey Endowment Fund. Additional season support is provided by The Globus Family, David Toberisky, and Friends of Film. Transportation assistance is provided by Japan Airlines, the official Japanese airline sponsor of Japan Society Film. Housing assistance is provided by the Kitano Hotel, the official hotel sponsor of Japan Society Film.

  • Friday, September 8, 2023
  • 7:00 pm
  • In-Person Event
  • Timed Tickets
  • $16 Nonmembers
  • $8 Members
  • $14 Seniors/Students
  • $14 Person with Disability