Martin Teller's Movie Reviews

I watch movies, I write some crap

  • Recent Posts

  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Meta

Kanashimi no Beradona (Belladonna of Sadness)

Posted by martinteller on August 3, 2013

Jean and Jeanne are a young peasant couple, under the oppression of a greedy baron.  On their wedding day, the baron rapes Jeanne, sending her on a path that includes making a deal with the devil, using her new powers to cure the citizens of black plague, and ultimately her crucifixion.

Hey Japan… what’s up with all the rape?  You guys have some serious repression issues, or maybe not enough repression, I don’t know.  The more I see it pop up in Japanese movies, the more unsettling it gets.  In an arguably feminist-minded work like this, perhaps even more so.  Because it’s animation, the rape is more metaphorical than explicit, but it depicts Jeanne being literally torn into two pieces.  She gets raped again by the devil (voiced by, of all people, Tatsuya Nakadai).

Putting aside the uncomfortable rape stuff, this is an odd film.  I would say the majority of it is not even “animated” at all, but simply a camera moving over still drawings.  The artwork something like Klimt meets Hieronymus Bosch meets a 7th-grader’s notebook.  There’s some pretty wild shit going on.

But I don’t know… it got old after a while.  Maybe I’m too distracted with things going on in my life, but I got tired of the rampant over-the-top misery.  While the visuals are occasionally fascinating, and there’s something to the revolutionary (in more ways than one) subject matter, I found my interest level fluctuating.  Rating: Fair (65)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: