Suzuki Seijun 100
Screening Dates
  • August 19, 2023 8:20
35mm Prints

Satan’s Town
Japan 1956
Suzuki Seijun
79 min. 35mm

After getting out of prison, a gang boss decides to pull off a heist, but the team he assembles has multiple competing ambitions and scant loyalty. To viewers who are familiar with only Suzuki’s late Nikkatsu work, Satan’s Town may be the earliest work of recognizable Suzuki style. Here his formal experiments extend to a sequence shot upside down in the reflection of a swimming pool and another constructed from freeze-frames, while his trademark black humour shows itself in the numerous murders depicted, and in the film’s climactic moments. —William Carroll

In Japanese with English subtitles

“[Exhibits] an impressive command of the form at such an early stage in the filmmaker’s development … An auspicious intimation portending similar leaps and bounds in his later career.” Kathleen Sachs, Cine-File

followed by

Love Letter
Japan 1959
Suzuki Seijun
40 min. 35mm

A pianist goes to visit her forest ranger boyfriend when he stops replying to her letters. Shot on location in the Japanese Alps and Yamaguchi, this haunting film features elaborate tracking and crane shots of snowy vistas and a turn by the popular singer Frank Nagai, who sings the film’s title track. Gorgeous landscape shots and scintillating subjective devices are evidence of Suzuki’s versatility as a filmmaker. —William Carroll

In Japanese with English subtitles

A lyrical and visually arresting melodrama … Shows off [Suzuki’s] ability to shoot on location—in the breathtaking, snow-drenched Tohoku region of Honshu—which would later prove pivotal to his success as an independent filmmaker working outside the studio system.” Jessica Smith, TIFF

Supported by
Japan Foundation