High-rated movies with very few views. Suggestions are welcome.
The Human Condition III: A Soldier's Prayer
Love is the Condition for Being Human
The Japanese forces having been shattered, Kaji and some comrades embark on an epic journey on foot southward to where Kaji hopes to rejoin Michiko. After surviving many perils he is captured by the Red Army and subjected to treatment that echoes that meted out to the Chinese.
All things must end...
And so it goes without saying that we should not expect to come through this epic tale without the weight of existence bearing down upon us. Through Kaji we celebrate the stoic and prevailing strength of ideals, the resonance of a resilient conscience and voice for truth and compassion. Described by a Japanese villager as a 'Paragon of virtue', Kaji's quest to reunite with his love Michiko is an all conquering force that echoes right past the films final frame.
This final chapter sees Kaji leading his remaining followers, and other Japanese soldiers he meets along the way through dense forest, fighting for survival against Russian troops and Chinese militia and avoiding enemy capture, ultimately leading…
If No Greater Love was The Human Condition's social drama, and Road to Eternity its war piece, A Soldier's Prayer appropriately ends the trilogy with a survival story. Appropriate in that the previous two films have been gradually stripping away the comforts of society in Kaji until all that is left is his ideals, and a will to live. To say that the films have been getting darker and darker is an understatement. Here, the trials faced all but guarantee the final result, but still come as a shock.
Volume 5 details Kaji, having lost his squad during battle and rejected the notion of enlistment, journeys through the jungles of Manchuria with the sole goal of getting back to Michiko.…
The Human Condition I: No Greater Love
The Human Condition II: The Road to Eternity
A Soldier's Prayer is the most bleak of the three entries. Unable to rejoin his fractured unit, Kaji and a band of soldiers roam the vast expanses of Manchuria in search of the, quickly dwindling, Japanese Army. Fighting starvation, exhaustion, and roving bands of Russian troops/ Chinese militias, Kaji displays a resolve to return home to Michiko, and to protect his young, humanist, protégé, Terdada (Yûsuke Kawazu).
150th film this year. Here's to another 150 before December 31st. An unexpected journey is the best way to describe my experience with The Human Condition trilogy and a very depressing one at that. I thought I would never get around to watching these set of films, but I finally did and I'm incredibly glad about it. A set of films that are no doubt incredibly dark, realistic, bleak, and very heartbreaking to watch. A difficult watch due to the running times, i'm not going to lie, but it's worth every single second.
The Human Condition I: No Greater Love was about emotion, specifically empathy and sympathy, and how it can change one's perspective on war, cruel acts, and life…
This is to be my 2000th logged film in the Letterboxd database. There cannot be a more fulfilling entry to mark this milestone than the conclusion to what has proven itself to be one of the finest achievements cinema has to offer. Finally coming to the end of a 9.5 hour runtime, what must be digested is, as the title suggests, the entirety of what defines the human condition. From kindness, to love, to hope, to dreams, to glory, to hate, to violence, to strength and weakness - It is a story of a man who's dream is a simple one: to live peacefully with others. Is that not the ultimate goal? This is why Kaji's tale resonates so deeply…
The balance of this epic is crushing. In the final segment, A Soldier's Prayer, I was beginning to feel the sheer exhaustion of almost completing 9½ hours in under two days. Befittingly of all, it serves as a lengthy walk journey. This entry makes you physically feel the hardships and how unforgivably arduous it is to get home. It's particularly good at achieving this bleak grandeur, this yearn for your loved one, and to create a dream-like narrative (which is the first of the three) that isn't linear. A lengthy chunk is centered in a beautiful forest which becomes an ironic backdrop for when the starving refugees begin to lose all hope. There are also flashbacks of the beheadings in…
Free from the internment camps and army barracks of the previous films, the final chapter of The Human Condition is a long, desperate trek across war-torn China. Kaji assumes leadership of a small band of soldiers and refugees, but his authority is constantly put to the test. As the journey wears on, he struggles to hang on to his sanity and his humanity; if life is hard, war is much harder as it often brings out the worst in people. If the previous installment was like Full Metal Jacket, this was more like Apocalypse Now. Like the rest of this series, the film can be slow and deliberate at times, but it's always absorbing. The Human Condition is greater than the sum of its parts.
"I'm a murderer"
The third, and regrettably weakest, of the three Human Condition films, A Soldier's Prayer seems discontent with remaining stationary and focusing on the pathological and psychological effects the film's many trials has on its lead, rather spends almost all of its time revolved around some kind of relatively brief narrative tragedy, presenting new tribulations and challenges for its travelling band of deserting soldiers in an episodic manner until the movie reaches its envitable and emotionally shallow conclusion.
The greatest aspect of this film, as with the previous instalment, was the transformation of Tatsuya Nakadai. The harsh reality Kaji faces throughout his journey is excellently captured in the performance and costume of the film's lead. Nakadai could hardly…
The problem with Kobayashi (or Kurosawa, or Kinoshita, et al) is that, as great as their work may have been, it reached such widespread acclaim and international success due to their appropriation of a Western style, with clear hero figures taking on corrupt systems and the like. The Human Condition's brilliance is that it spends almost its entire ten-hour runtime wrestling with the implications of this dilemma; how can an Eastern film remain so when it bares so little resemblance to what had come before? This would be covered later on by Oshima and Yoshida and the other artists of the Japabese New Wave in more radical, (post)modernist terms, but Kobayashi here spent three films mulling on the ramifications of an East that aspires to the West and the horrific consequences that could yield in the search for a shared, worldwide culture that, above all, aspires to be truly human.
"I am a monster, but I am going to live!"
A Soldier's Prayer is the most horrific of the entire trilogy, Kaji's breaking point has long snapped, he is stranded in the middle of the Manchurian countryside as he desperately tries to get back home to Michiko. This is the most hallucinogenic of the trilogy, the cinematography has a haze, the edit is jarring forming a PTSD-like quality. And to top thing off, Nakadai is at his finest as the character of Kaji. I know I have been praising The Human Condition, but I also think it is Kobayashi's weakest work that I have seen so far. His late samurai tale, Harakiri is still my favourite of his and it always will be. But this still remains an important work to see for any Japanese or world cinema film-goer.
پایانی درخشان بر سه گانه ی ضدجنگ کوبایاشی
و مانفیست ناامیدکننده ی کارگردان برای روابط بشری برای تمام نژادها و زمان ها
همونطور که در مورد قسمت یک گفتم دکوپاژ این سه گانه از بهترین های سینماست و احساس میکنم قسمت سوم بنابه دلایلی بهترین قسمت و بعد قسمت اول و قسمت دوم هستند.شخصیت کاجی به خاطر مجال کافی کارگردان برای عمق دادن به شخصیتش عجیب ناب دراومده و در قسمت سوم شخصیت ناب دیگه ای رو هم داریم.ترادا
The final part in Kobayashi's epic on humanity and morales and it's wonderfully horrible. The endless horrors of war, (including but not limited to starvation, poisoning, rape, disease, abuse of power, and of course, murder.) have worn Kaji down to a shadow of what he previously was. Kobayashi's filmmaking has also drastically changed from the beginning of this epic. While at first the film presented it's self with a sort of classic dignity, now it's just madness. This film also has one of the most debasing endings of all time.
The true magnum opus of cinema.
When Kaji says that most POWs are not enemies in the class struggle, he sums up the theme of this final chapter of The Human Condition. Here, Kaji must largely maneuver outside of the political, bureaucratic, and military structures of the previous chapters. We press on with him outside the realm of war or even peace.
This chapter makes extensive use of voice-over to get into the characters' heads, and for good reason. This is a movie about the reasons we justify our own lives to ourselves. When he becomes a POW, Kaji is reintegrated into these oppressive social structures and must undergo hard labor.
This role reversal he endures says a great deal about the cyclical nature of priding…
UPDATED: September 11, 2016
The Criterion Collection is a video distribution company that sells "important classic and contemporary films" in…
Movies that have such a powerful/memorable/weird/insane/awesome/surprising last scene (or shot) that made you say "THAT ENDING!!!!!" or variations