EROS + MASSACRE
Directed by Kiju Yoshida
EROS + MASSACRE can be called a biopic of anarchist Sakae Osugi (1885-1923), who was assassinated by the Japanese military in 1923. The film depicts Osugi’s sensually-complicated relationship with three women: his wife, his second lover, and her third lover. His second lover, Noe Ito (1895-1923), eventually dies with him.
Director Kiju Yoshida comments on the film, “Sakae Osugi counters the masculine power system of Japan – the patriarchal state headed by the Emperor – with his anarchism and free love. But Noe Ito thinks his scope is too limited. A question that she keeps asking is what would be the ‘mother of a mother of a mother.’ The conflict between the man’s logic and the woman’s passion clashes at the moment of the massacre. That is also the moment when the Taisho era and the present time collide.”
For Yoshida, Osugi is not simply a political figure of the early twentieth century. The history of modern Japan as well as the image of Japan’s future is fully reflected on him. And Ito, played by legendary actress Mariko Okada, is the voice of Yoshida’s vision. –Daisuke Miyao
Co-presented by the Museum of Photographic Arts