Saturday, May 9, 2009 at 7:30pm
An Evening with Hara Kazuo
Extreme Private Eros: Love Song 1974
Hara Kazuo, 16mm, 1974, 98 mins
“I want to drag my audience into my life, aggressively, and I want to create a mood of confusion. I am very frightened by this, and by the things I film, but it’s because I am frightened that I feel I must do these films.” — Hara Kazuo
One of Japan’s most provocative and controversial filmmakers, documentarian Hara Kazuo is best known for The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On (1987), in which he follows a lunatic political protester’s violent quest to literally beat the truth out of elderly war veterans. His harrowing journey through the lives of the handicapped, Goodbye CP (1972), had shocked audiences years earlier with its stark and unblinking portrayal of a subject still taboo to mainstream Japanese society.
For this rare in-person appearance, Hara will introduce and discuss his autobiographical film Extreme Private Eros: Love Song 1974, an ultra-personal diary centering on his ex-girlfriend, radical feminist Takeda Miyuki. Not long after their breakup, Hara decides to follow her around with his 16mm camera as an unlikely way to continue their relationship. At first portending a sadistic macho trip, Extreme Private Eros proves to be an unexpectedly moving and even humanist film as it chronicles Takeda's later relationships with other women and Black American GIs in the low-rent, gutter-tough world of Okinawa go-go bars. Hara himself almost never appears in frame, but remains present as a self-deprecating, masochistic voyeur to his former lover's ongoing life.
Followed by a conversation with Hara.
Hara’s event takes place in conjunction with the release of his first English-language book Camera Obtrusa: Hara Kazuo's Action Documentaries, published by Kaya Press.
Tickets - $7, available at door.