The Shadow Within
Kage no kuruma
Release Date : June, 13th, 1970
Running Time : 97 min
Genre : Feature
Color : -
Screening Format : -
[ Directed by ] NOMURA Yoshitaro
[ Produced by ]
[ Cast ]
[ Staff ]
[ Production Company ]
[ Distributor (Japan) ]
[ Story ]
One day, Yukio (Go Kato), is addressed by Yasuko (Shima Iwashita) in a bus. A neighbor in his childhood, she is now a widow living with her young son. Married, with no children, he is an ordinary middle-aged man working in
a travel agency. Tired with routine he leads a solitary family life, neglected by his wife (Mayumi Ogawa). So he decides to console the lonely widow. But they know such a relationship could be disastrous if they fall in love.
Each time he visits her, however, her six-year-old boy, Ken, weighs on his mind. He is conscious of the boy's eyes while making love to her and tormented by his melancholic memories of his own childhood - his uncle (Yusuke Takita) loved his widow mother (Kaneko Iwasaki)... he hated his uncle and caused him to drown on a fishing trip.
"Wasn't it I who killed my uncle? It's not certain... Yes, I did…. And now I'm in my uncle's position and Ken is attempting to kill me…. That's impossible…. No, Ken surely harbors ill feelings against me…." Illusion and reality are mixed up in the mind of the timid man, who is stung by his conscience.
One morning, after spending the night with her for the first time, he happens to see Ken with a hatchet, and grips the boy's throat. He insists to the police that he acted in self defense because the boy tried to kill him. But who could believe that a boy of only six could plot to murder someone? He cries, "It's true! The boy was attempting to kill me! It's not a lie! Even a child can harbor the thought of killing! "
Then the images come forth again from the recesses of his mind: the waves which swallowed up his uncle and the beautiful sunset. Nobody knows for certain whether it was fact or his illusion….
【Quoted from Unijapan Film Quarterly 1970 13.3】
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