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Woman in the Dunes

Woman in the Dunes (1964)

Director: Hiroshi Teshigahara
Screenplay: Kōbō Abe
Starring: Eiji Okada,Kyōko Kishida
Genre: Drama Fantasy
Language: Japanese

Woman in the Dunes...It was fascinating to watch and I'm still thinking about it right now. That doesn't mean I think it was perfect and as I write this I haven't worked out my rating for it yet.

One thing for sure, there are so many great cinema-artsy shots in the movie that I had a hard time settling on just one image for this review. Visually this is impressive.

What's also impressive is how the TV show The Twilight Zone obviously influenced this movie...right down to the similar music. I loved this story and it's setting at the bottom of a sand pit. There's so much to think about here...and that's a rarity as most movies for me are forgotten the next day.

I do think there was some missed opportunities and I would've nixed the villagers lined up wanting to watch the man and the woman copulate. With all the closeups of their weird facial garb I was reminded of The Road Warrior and something about that scene and it's pacing seemed out of place in an otherwise contemplative type film.

The end scene (a bit of a spoiler here) with the woman being taking away in pain with a ectopic pregnancy, repeatedly crying out 'no-no', 'no-no'...was haunting and oh so sad. I find myself wondering what happened to her. Did she have her baby and return to live with the man in the dune pit? Or did she die? I hope she returned and they lived a good life, albeit a strange one.