Magino Village – A Tale / The Sundial Carved with a Thousand Years of Notches
(Sennen kizami no hidokwi – Magino-mura monogatari)

Screening on Film
Directed by Shinsuke Ogawa.
Japan, 1986, 16mm, color, 222 min.
Japanese with English subtitles.

With Sanrizuka – Heta Village, this film is Ogawa Productions’ other masterpiece, bringing together all the themes Ogawa explored throughout his oeuvre: farming, state violence, resistance, modernization and village time. The film masterfully combines the conventions of the science film with Griersonian documentary sequences about ghosts and gods, along with fictional sequences featuring cameos by the likes of Butoh founder Tatsumi Hijikata in his last performance and “pink film” star Junko Miyashita. It is a thoughtful meditation on history and the way it is never quite “past” in village Japan. If Ogawa’s first films and the Sanrizuka Series arc from the self-centered concerns of the student movement to understanding the communal way of life of the village, then the “Magino Village Story” displays a similar arcing movement away from the collective toward the powerful individual expression of Ogawa.

Part of program

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Songs of Struggle:
The Radical Documentaries of Shinsuke Ogawa

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