To the Ends of the Earth

To the Ends of the Earth ★★★★

I adore those Kiyoshi Kurosawa movies that despite not being proper genre films draw on his horror background for their aesthetic strategies. To the Ends of the Earth is about, like most horror movies to some extant, the unknown and everything about it is about how Maeda negotiates with a world outside her own. It starts a standard sense of alienation and director and actress combine to push it in so many directions. To the Ends of the Earth has a lot in common with Kurosawa and Maeda first film in a foreign land, The Seventh Code, but that film was more overt in how it was using fiction to modulate her relationship to that strange space. The entire sequence that goes from the chase to the phone call is as good as the best stuff Kurosawa has ever done and everything else is equally compelling. The earth trembles here.

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