Japanese Culture and Its Influence on The Japanese Film Industry as Well as Its Western Counterpart

The Japanese film industry is currently the fourth largest film producing industry in the world [a]. With that being said, Japanese culture would also be one of the many cultures across the world, that is acknowledged by the masses.

I always had my interests in Japanese culture, but it was not until I watched a movie of one of the world’s most renowned Japanese film director, Akira Kurosawa, that I started to delve into this fascinating world. The film that was screened is called, ‘Dreams’ or ‘Yume’.

It was Akira Kurosawa’s first film after his long break. This movie is a series of eight episodes or vignettes. These eight mythical vignettes are a part of his nigh time visions which he claimed to have experience it, repeatedly [b]. All these eight vignettes had one common aspect to it; the lifestyles of the characters as well as the surroundings captured on the screen were very culturally apt. Unhindered by the western influences, the vignettes were deep rooted into the Japanese culture.

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In the first vignette, Kurosawa had his story revolve around the ancient folklore of the secret wedding procession of the foxes (or kitsune). The next vignette is regarding the famous doll festival in Japan Also known as Hina Matsuri. In the third vignette, Kurosawa mentions a Japanese myth of Yuki-onna. The fourth vignette is about a commander’s life during World War 2, and how his mistake caused him an instant death of his entire troop. This particular vignette throws light on the impact the World War 2 has caused on Japan.

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In the fifth vignette is particularly different.

In the sense that it is based out of Japan, or rather out of this world and into the world of Vincent Van Gogh. This is an interesting vignette that play around with the visual effects to immerse the audience into the film, almost creating an illusion of dream. Followed by this interesting vignette is the sixth vignette. In this, the surrounding of this story is based off on the sacred mountain of Japan, called ‘The Mount Fuji’. It is a symbol in Japanese culture. It is the physical manifestation of physical, cultural and spiritual aspect of Japan [c]. The seventh vignette talks about the infernal world of humans who were the results of the mutation. This mutation took place because of the unpredictable nuclear eruption. In this vignette, Kurosawa has mentioned the Japanese mythical creature called Oni and through this story, has created a subtle comparison between humans and the mythical creature, Oni. In the last vignette, which is the eighth vignette, Kurosawa has brought in the aspects of spiritual living as opposed to modern living. He also brings in the aspect of the rituals followed after a death, in Japanese culture, bringing this film to a perfect end.

Updated: Jan 25, 2024
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Japanese Culture and Its Influence on The Japanese Film Industry as Well as Its Western Counterpart. (2024, Jan 25). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/japanese-culture-and-its-influence-on-the-japanese-film-industry-as-well-as-its-western-counterpart-essay

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