I've just watched this for at least the third time since I acquired this French-subbed set.zedz wrote: End of a Sweet Night
Similarly impressive and concise, this film (based on Stendahl, according to Yoshida’s intro – these are extremely brief but generally offer one or two hugely valuable insights) features what would have been the most venal ‘hero’ yet presented on film, had Oshima not got in first with Cruel Story of Youth (Chuck Tatum’s a teddy bear in comparison). He’s a guy who will do anything to get ahead, including prostituting a casual acquaintance (who turns out to have more self-possession and self-esteem than he thought) and, when that fails, prostituting himself. Yoshida’s visual style is still comparatively trad, but rock solid and wonderfully expressive. The leads’ unhealthy ‘relationship’ is sublimated into furious velodrome circuits, and there’s a superb interlude on a lake that looks forward to A Story Written With Water.
For the most part the subtitles change far too quickly for me to translate fully, and its often too much a distraction to constantly glance down because his compositions are so stunningly beautiful, and his choice of perspectives so masterly that you never want to gaze outside those black bars.
But it doesn't really matter, anyway because its so beautifully cinematic, and the story is quite basic anyway, that you can just wallow in its visual, and aural, beauty.
This is arguably among my Top Three Yoshidas, - along with 'Story Written On Water' and 'Coup D'Etat', but its hard to even narrow them down to three; he really had such a consistency of excellence.
I can't understand why no English-language DVD company never picked up on this outstanding, and criminally-neglected, filmmaker.