Detroit Film Theatre


Friday, March 05, 2010 – Sunday, March 14, 2010

 Detroit Film Theatre

  • Fees Apply
  • Film

(Russia/Italy/France/2005—directed by Alexander Sokurov)

August 15, 1945: a shocked Japan hears the voice of divine leader Emperor Hirohito for the first time, as he implores his people to cease all military activity, initiating a formal end to WWII and the beginning of a new period of American Occupation, led by Gen. Douglas MacArthur. Russian filmmaker Alexander Sokurov (Russian Ark) creates a uniquely hypnotic, eerie portrait of the enigmatic Hirohito during the twilight of the war, as he faces surrender and – most disturbingly – faces the reality of renouncing his status as a deity to a stunned population. Issey Ogata (Yi-Yi) gives a mesmerizing performance as the defeated emperor whose legendary meetings with MacArthur determine the fate of his nation and lay the foundation for Japan’s phoenix-like postwar reconstruction. As Hirohito’s power and status collide with his unfamiliarity with the real world (he does not know how to use a doorknob), one of the cinema’s strangest, most indelible characters emerges. In Japanese and English, with subtitles. (110 min.)

“Wonderfully eccentric and fascinating… shot as if it were a science-fiction film. As a portrait of pathology — that of Japan and of Hirohito both — it’s terrific.” — Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

Friday, March 5 at 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 6 at 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 7 at 2:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 14 at 4:30 p.m.