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“Director’s jail” is Hollywood-ese for the limbo in which film directors find themselves after a flop or two. Movie reviewers have their own versions of this, though they tend to be more tolerant of their favorite directors than are Hollywood producers, whose own necks are on the line when a film tanks at the box office.

I sentenced Shunya Ito to my own director’s jail after he made “Pride” (1998), a feature-length paean to the “goodness” and “greatness” of Hideki Tojo, Japan’s wartime leader. The real-life fallout from the actions of Tojo and his government, including millions of dead Asians, was either air-brushed away — or justified.

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