This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Andrew’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
I suppose I liked this well enough, but at this point movies that are scoring sixes and sevens aren't cutting the mustard. In the past two months, I've only given out two scores of an eight or higher for BOOK movies and only one ten all year, to a BOOK movie ("Scarface"). Sure, I may just be getting to picky for my britches, but it seems that my goal to save nothing but greatness for the final 100 was unsuccessful. Instead, I've loaded the final 100 with heaps of mediocrity and Ugetsu falls into that category. I'm usually not one for fantastical elements in my films, but I suppose it worked here to mild success. I dug the few twists that were strategically placed throughout the film - one where we learn that Lady Wakasa is actually a spirit and the other when we learn that Miyagi is dead.
Perhaps one of the saddest moments I can remember in recent memory to come out of a BOOK movie was the revelation that Miyagi was deceased. When Genjuro finally makes his way back to his family, it's a sweet moment. She tells him she doesn't care where he's been, only that he's safe and he seems genuinely happy to see her again. Not only has he just had an affair, but he learns that his mistress was a ghost. He's scared & confused and it's Miyagi who puts him at ease. Only for us to learn the next morning, that Miyagi has been dead and that Genjuro's dreams of her were only a wish filled dream. Call it good, but not great and probably ripe to be rewatched someday and reconsidered.