Coup d’état

Screening on Film
Directed by Kiju Yoshida.
With Rentaro Mikuni, Yasuyo Matsumura, Yasuo Miyake.
Japan, 1973, 35mm, black & white, 110 min.
Japanese with English subtitles.
Print source: The Japan Foundation

The extended engagement with the intellectual and cultural roots of modern Japanese politics explored by Yoshida in Eros + Massacre began earlier with Coup d'état, his remarkable portrait of Ikki Kita, a controversial militarist who led the notorious February 26, 1836 coup later fetishized by Yukio Mishima. Yoshida's first non-widescreen feature, Coup d'état brilliantly exploits the smaller format with stunning, sharply modernist cinematography and mise-en- scène that favors unusual, off-kilter compositions and works to heighten the claustrophobia of Kia's increasing paranoia and delusion. Coup d'état also features an incredible score by noted avant-garde composer and frequent Yoshida collaborator Ichiyanagi Sei.

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Art Cinema, Counter Cinema: The Cinema of Kiju Yoshida and Mariko Okada

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