Sunday, February 1, 2009
Mishima at the Harvard Film Archives
I've meant to see this movie for some time now. I like the Paul Schrader scripts and movies I've seen. And I'm very into the Mishima novels I've read. Even outside of his novels, the way in which Mishima died is fascinating and worthy of a movie. To tell the story of Mishima, Schrader employs a very unique structure that blends novels with biography while spending a significant amount of time on Mishima's suicide. The novels are presented as staged plays and were probably my favorite part of the movie. Schrader utilized very impressive and color coded back drops through the novel sequences, which stressed their unreality. The one complaint I would have had is the biography sections did little to explain the enigma that is Mishima. The movie mostly focused on his death and his novels. Schrader was at the Film Archives for this presentation and I found him to be very upfront and frank during the question and answers sessions. He also swore as much as you would expect from the man who brought the world Taxi Driver.