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A Man Vanishes

5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

One of the most important and complex works by two-time Palme d'Or winning director Shohei Imamura, A MAN VANISHES begins as an investigation into one of the thousands of missing persons cases that occur in Japan each year. The film follows the case of Tadashi, a handsome businessman who has suddenly vanished. Imamura and his crew interview the man's fiancée, Yoshie, who is desperately searching for him, and the filmmaker becomes increasingly involved in her life. But the investigation casts a shadow of doubt over the couple's relationship, Tadashi's business ventures, his relationship with Yoshie's sister, and even the investigating film director, Imamura himself, who may not be what he seems to be.

Radical film in scope, technique, and aesthetic, A MAN VANISHES distills many of Imamura's central themes and obsessions, the film culminating a stunning sequence that explodes any stable sense of fiction and reality.

This box set also includes 5 documentaries by Shohei Imamura:
In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Malaysia (45 min.) In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Thailand (50 min.) The Pirates of Bubuan (46 min.) Outlaw-Matsu Comes Home (48 min.) Karayuki-San, the Making of a Prostitute (75 min.)

All for the first time on DVD in the US!

In Japanese with English subtitles.

Review

A mercurial mystery, a vertiginous drama and the very stuff of cinema. --Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

Not merely a great filmmaker, but one of the greatest artists in the history of cinema. --John Harkness, Now Magazine

In a coup de cinéma that has been equaled only by Abbas Kiarostami's Close-Up , Imamura transforms fact into artifice, being into acting, personal identity into a tenuous fabrication. --James Quandt, in the book Shohei Imamura

Product Details

  • Actors: Shohei Imamura, Yoshie Hayakawa
  • Directors: Shohei Imamura
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Black & White, NTSC, Subtitled
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Icarus Films
  • DVD Release Date: December 11, 2012
  • Run Time: 130 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00A7Z6TC6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #122,566 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

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A Man Vanishes (1967) is a fascinating film from one of my favorite Japanese directors, Shohei Imamura, that is difficult to categorize. It is intended as a documentary but takes on elements of fiction and staging throughout. However, it is the mystery of how so many people can disappear in such a small country-at the time of the film Imamaura states that in the last year 91,000 were disappeared in Japan. This film looks at the case of the disappearnce of a plastics salesman named Tadashi Oshima. Imamura and his crew set out to discover what happened to Tadashi by interviewing those who knew him best—his co-workers, friends, and his fiancée Yoshie. All the while gathering contradictory information concerning his character. But as their investigation delves deeper into Tadashi's dubious business ventures and his enigmatic relationship with Yoshie and, possibly, her sister, the line between filmmaker and subject, fact and fiction, blur. It can be said to be radical in its scope, aesthetic, and technique for what is essentially a nonfiction film.

The DVD is worth it for A Man Vanishes alone but Icarus Films also includes five other fascinating documentaries by Imamura: In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Malaysia (45 min.) In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Thailand (50 min.) The Pirates of Bubuan (46 min.) Outlaw-Matsu Comes Home (48 min.) Karayuki-San, the Making of a Prostitute (75 min.)

In Search of the Unreturned Soldiers in Malaysia (1971) is Imamura's first foray into SE Asia and perhaps the least compelling of the bunch. One of the prospective subjects of his documentary has already died apparently of drug and alcohol addiction.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Icarus Films will release this on DVD in the United States later this year. In the US TV system (NTSC).
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