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Watch: Yasujiro Ozu’s Glorious Repetition

Watch: Yasujiro Ozu's Glorious Repetition

If you watch enough of the films of a particular director, be it Martin Scorsese, Jane Campion, or Robert Altman, you will begin to understand the code in their work: the way shots are framed, the way characters tilt their heads, the way figures move through a space, all come to mean something. These configurations become a visual language that works alongside the language of a script, at times helping to tell the script’s story, at times telling an entirely different story. In kogonada’s most recent outing, he examines the work of Yasujiro Ozu. Three frames, side by side: three couples eating together; three women, head in hands; three men staring broodingly into space. These visual displays, compiled from 24 different films, have as much of an effect on us as the words of the screenplay might, but they speak to us differently, accessing a subconscious “eye,” if you want, that is different from the two eyes we use to watch the film. kogonada’s piece strikes a quiet, offbeat chord, and should serve as an excellent way into the work of this Japanese master     

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