Term Paper: Japanese Film Double Suicide or Hanabi

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Japanese Film

Defining Reality in Double Suicide: When Traditional and New Storytelling Methods Combine

Masahiro Shinoda's 1969 film Double Suicide recounts a tale of a two lovers who ultimately vow to be together in death, as they cannot fully be together in life. Though a common theme, this film tells the story in a decidedly uncommon way, utilizing elements of traditional Japanese puppet theatre and other Japanese storytelling techniques, combined with moments of more modern naturalistic and cinematic storytelling. The result is a compelling film that leads the audience not only on an exploration of the themes in inherent to the film's content, but also on an investigation of the implications of the film's construction and presentation.

The use of the puppet theatre and ongoing non-realistic sets in the film Double Suicide help to emphasize the artificiality of the piece, while at the same time making the emotions and tragedy of the film as a whole more pronounced. It is not as though the audience would ever mistake what they are witnessing as reality, or as anything other than a story told through film, but the puppet theatre and several other elements that appear throughout the film serve as constant reminder that this story is unreal -- a fiction. This does not make the action any less intense or reduce the emotional content and value of the film, however, and in fact it does quite the opposite. By emphasizing the fact that this is fake, it creates a greater sense of generalization and familiarity -- because the audience is constantly reminded that these are only representations of people, not real individuals, it is easier to see echoes of emotions, actions, desires, and motives that all human beings… [END OF PREVIEW]

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"Japanese Film Double Suicide or Hanabi."  Essaytown.com.  June 13, 2011.  Accessed November 18, 2019.