Perhaps I know best why man alone laughs: he alone suffers so deeply that he had to invent laughter. The unhappiest and most melancholy man is, as fitting, the most cheerful. Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power ≈ 91 On German Pessimism This Nietzsche’s thought can be seen as a bridge between his youthful … Continue reading In Friedrich Nietzsche’s Words: Why Do We Like Comedies?
Kenji Mizoguchi's Sanshô dayû is based on a folk tale taking place in the Heian period; Chinese and Buddhist influence, as well as the one of the Imperial power were at their summit. Mizoguchi is one of the greatest Japanese directors who created during the period of Japanese cinema which may very well be called its … Continue reading Mizoguchi’s “Sansho the Baillif”: Karl Marx in Heian Japan
What need is there to weep over parts of life? The whole of it calls to tears. Seneca, To Marcia On Consolation The veracity of Seneca’s words can be debated upon, but they seem to fit to describe the Coen brothers character Larry’s fortune in the film. Yet, A Serious Man is a comedy. We … Continue reading A Comedy of Job: Coen Brothers’ Pitch Black Humor in “A Serious Man”
From the very first scene of Nausicaä we can see that we are in a place of magical beauty. The trees, a windmill and the surroundings are coated in what looks like a spider-web or frozen snow; the flakes are falling around a man riding strange creatures, wearing a mask, looking bird-like. The man breaks … Continue reading Other-worldly Environmentalism in Miyazaki’s “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”
In 1995 Hayao Miyazaki took a group of artists and animators to the ancient forests of Yakushima, which inspired the landscapes in the film. At the beginning, the narrator says: “In ancient times, the land lay covered in forests, where from ages long past, dwelt the spirits of the gods. Back then, man and beast … Continue reading Fight for the Cursed World in Miyazaki’s “Princess Mononoke”