Masahiro Shinoda

Double Suicide

Double Suicide

Many films have drawn from classic Japanese theatrical forms, but none with such shocking cinematic effect as director Masahiro Shinoda's Double Suicide. In this striking adaptation of a Bunraku puppet play (featuring the music of famed composer Toru Takemitsu), a paper merchant sacrifices family, fortune, and ultimately life for his erotic obsession with a prostitute. Criterion is proud to present Double Suicide in a stunning digital transfer, with a new and improved English subtitle translation.

Film Info

  • Masahiro Shinoda
  • Japan
  • 1969
  • 104 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.33:1
  • Japanese
  • Spine #104

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer
  • New and improved English subtitles

New cover by Lloyd Ziff

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer
  • New and improved English subtitles

New cover by Lloyd Ziff

Double Suicide
Cast
Kichiemon Nakamura
Jihei
Shima Iwashita
Koharu/Osan
Hosei Komatsu
Tahei
Yusuke Takita
Magoemon
Kamatari Fujiwara
Yamatoya owner
Yoshi Kato
Gozaemon
Shizue Kawarazaki
Osan’s mother
Tokie Hidari
Osugi
Credits
Director
Masahiro Shinoda
Screenplay
Taeko Tomioka
Screenplay
Masahiro Shinoda
Screenplay
Toru Takemitsu
From the play by
Monzaemon Chikamatsu
Cinematography
Toichiro Narushima
Art director
Kiyoshi Awazu
Music
Toru Takemitsu

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Explore

Toru Takemitsu

Composer

Toru Takemitsu
Toru Takemitsu

Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu, known to Western listeners predominantly as the man behind the music in such iconic movies as Woman in the Dunes and Ran, was an acclaimed classical composer and music theorist well before he became one of his country’s most reliably brilliant scorers of film. A noted musical avant-gardist in midcentury Japanese intellectual circles, as influenced by jazz as by Debussy, Takemitsu first turned to feature film composing when he was commissioned (along with Masaru Sato) to write the hip, twangy-guitar-inflected score for the Ko Nakahira youth flick Crazed Fruit (1956). It wasn’t until a few years later, though, when his friend Hiroshi Teshigahara asked him to score Teshigahara’s short debut film, José Torres (1959), that Takemitsu’s career in movies truly began. The deeply sympathetic working relationship that they discovered on that project resulted in Takemitsu’s providing the haunting, instrumentally jarring themes for virtually all of Teshigahara’s subsequent output (“He was always more than a composer,” Teshigahara would recall. “He involved himself so thoroughly in every aspect of a film—script, casting, location shooting, editing, and total sound design”). Takemitsu became a go-to guy for many other major Japanese filmmakers as well, including Masaki Kobayashi (Harakiri), Akira Kurosawa (Dodes’ka-den), and Nagisa Oshima (Empire of Passion); his themes remain some of the most beautiful, spectral music ever written for the screen.