Ugetsu monogatari
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Presented in a manner as eerie as it is heartbreaking, this film is a gorgeous supernatural fable about the folly of men with dreams larger than their abilities and their women who suffer as a result. Genjuro (Masuyaki Mori) is a potter who longs for wealth and luxury, while Tobei (Sakae Ozawa), a farmer, dreams of the glories of the samurai to the point of ignoring his wife. Though a war rages around them, they venture to town to sell their wares. Genjuro becomes bewitched by a beautiful though vengeful ghost (Machiko Kyo), while his wife is murdered by a soldier; Tobei becomes a noted… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Tale of two men in seething 16th-century Japan has a color and panorama which makes this absorbing film fare."
‑ Variety Staff, Variety
"One of the greatest of all films."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"In exploring the transience of happiness and the injustice of patriarchal society, Mizoguchi makes lyrical use of gliding long takes that reinforce his material and mystical themes. It's a work of sheer genius."
‑ David Parkinson, Radio Times
"A masterpiece of Japanese cinema."
‑ Cole Smithey,
"A withering hip check against machismo."
‑ Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine
"A marvelously wise and moving classic, but also one full of sights that might make you cry, like Genjuro, 'I never imagined such pleasures existed!'"
‑ Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune
"Kenji Mizoguchi, who directed, has a fantastic flexibility in using his actors and his camera, as witness his range in this film."
‑ Bosley Crowther, New York Times
"Mizoguchi's graceful, meditative camera style lends quiet intensity to the drama."
‑ , Total Film
"It lyrically fuses together the real and the supernatural worlds into a satisfying allegory, where both worlds seem to exist side by side."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"Somehow Mizoguchi has made a film that is not the cruel, sadistic exercise which this description would make it seem."
‑ Chris Barsanti,
"A ravishingly composed, evocatively beautiful film."
‑ , Time Out
"Densely plotted but as emotionally subtle as its name, Ugetsu is one of the great experiences of cinema."
‑ Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
"One of the masterpieces of Japanese and world cinema."
‑ Emanuel Levy, EmanuelLevy.Com
"Mizoguchi employs his trademark fluidity to brilliant effect."
‑ Jeffrey M. Anderson, Combustible Celluloid
"A masterpiece from Mizoguchi -- for its historical drama, its moving social and family themes and its marvellously moody ghost story."
‑ Daniel Etherington, Film4
More reviews for Ugetsu monogatari on Rotten Tomatoes