Praised by Japanese film critics and much admired by his contemporaries Akira Kurosawa and Yasujirô Ozu, Tomu Uchida nonetheless remains a little-known in the west. His 1955 masterpiece Bloody Spear at Mount Fuji is an excellent entry point for the newcomer. Set during the Edo period, Bloody Spear at Mount Fuji is a tragicomic road movie of sorts, following a samurai, his two servants - including spear-carrier Genpachi (Chiezô Kataoka) - and the various people they meet on their journey, including a policeman in pursuit of a thief, a young child and a woman who is to be sold into prostitution.
Winner of a prestigious Blue Ribbon Award for supporting actor - and Kurosawa regular - Daisuke Katô, Bloody Spear at Mount Fuji is a film deserving of much wider international recognition.
Jeremy [Six Strings]