ELEGANT BEAST (1962) directed by Yuzo Kawashima, released on blu ray by Radiance Films.
In their humble two-room apartment, the Maeda family seem ever so self-effacing - but their modest façade hides another truth. Daughter Tomoko is the mistress of a bestselling author with well-lined pockets. Son Minoru embezzles funds with his lover Yukie (Ayako Wakao, Red Angel), who has her own hidden agenda. And father Tokizo (Yunosuke Ito, Ikiru, Lone Wolf and Cub) is a former military man who swears he will never return to the poverty he knew during the war, no matter what the cost.
One after another, those affected by the Maedas’ schemes show up on their doorstep.
But these visitors all have their own duplicitous agendas. With each knock on the door, the gamesmanship reaches a whole new level.
Elegant Beast was adapted by Kaneto Shindo (Onibaba, Naked Island) from his own stage play. Director Yuzo Kawashima, mentor of Shohei Imamura and a major influence on the Japanese New Wave, makes magnificent widescreen use of the single apartment setting to deliver a ferocious satire on Japan’s post-war economic miracle.
New 4K restoration
Uncompressed mono PCM audio
Interview with film critic Toshiaki Sato (2023)
Appreciation by filmmaker Toshiaki Toyoda (2023)
Visual essay by critic Tom Mes on post-war architecture in Japanese cinema (2023)
New and improved English subtitles
Reversible sleeve featuring original and newly commissioned artwork
Limited edition booklet featuring new writing by Midori Suiren and contemporary archival writing
Limited edition of 3000 copies, presented in full-heightScanavo packaging with removable OBI strip leaving packaging free of certificates and markings
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