Ugetsu ★★★★★

Ugetsu is a beautifully constructed visual tale. The director's excellent use of long gliding takes is a good example of that and how it brings about a sort of mystical charm. It is a very meditative sort of viewing experience that really helps accentuate the drama during the more quiet moments of the film. There is no doubt in my mind that this is a masterpiece or at least borderline to being one. This black & white film is quite colorful and really draws you in to its strange world. It is quite great. More particularly it is Genjuro's tale that provides the most drama and intrigue but the other stories are also very engaging as well. Overall Ugetsu is a film that does not get too far ahead of itself with its themes of happiness and patriarchal society and instead goes at a pace that allow the viewers to soak in the beauty of this viewing experience.

It is a wonderful immersion of both the real world and the mystical world that makes it hard for one to distinguish and separate the two by the end of the movie. The fluidity between these two worlds makes for an excellent allegorical vibe that few other films can match. The idea of what a man should be and act like (in accordance with their wives/significant others) is also heavily analyzed in this. With that in mind it makes one think that this is going to be one dark and bleak tale but instead we get an odd sense of wonderment and hope for the characters at the end. I am pretty close to putting this on my top 10 list because it really is that good. Ugetsu has a lot going for itself from its historical drama, its views on social and family themes, and finally to the ghost story where most of that mystical charm comes from.

This film has lots of range that is proven so in its actors and its camera work. It is rich in tone and subtleties. It is dense when it comes to plot but it is the emotions that make Ugetsu subtle and powerful. It is lyrical and enchanting and I would recommend this to just about everyone I know.

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