October 15, 2008

In a Bamboo Grove (1922 story)

Written by Ryunosuke Akutagawa.

When a man is found dead in a bamboo grove, the testimonies of various people are collected to piece together his fate. They all seem to agree on the setup - a man and his wife travel down the road and are captured by a bandit who ties up the man and rapes the wife - but what exactly happened next is anyone's guess as the three characters involved (even the dead man, thanks to a medium) have different reasons for his demise.

It's such a simple yet intricate story about human fallibility and I can see why it's had, partially thanks to the film, such a lasting influence.

My review of Rashomon (1950 film).

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