Reviews of No Greater Love (1959) and related work

No Greater Love (1959Moving picture, 3.5 hours)

The first in Kobayashi’s “Human Condition” trilogy, or more literally, “The Terms of Being a Mensch”. Pretentious, but Nakadai kicks ass and the treatment of the atrocities is good.

References here: “Don’t mention the war!”, Europa (1991).

fiction Japanese production moving picture

Road to Eternity (1959Moving picture, 3.0 hours)

The gender aspects are worse, despite the absence of the army of prostitutes. The lack of combat is very nice, but the barracks scenes, although human enough, are not as bold or creative as the abuse of Chinese prisoners in the first one.

fiction Japanese production moving picture sequel

A Soldier’s Prayer (1961Moving picture, 3.2 hours)

The gender aspects are somewhere in between. Pretty scenery and good final scenes, but little is added. Ichikawa’s Fires on the Plain (1959) does better with the motifs.

fiction Japanese production moving picture sequel