This review as originally published on Sunday, Jan. 28, 1968.

Director Nagisa Oshima occupies somewhat the same place in the Japanese cinema that Jean-Luc Godard does in the French. A complete intellectual, he is much more interested in ideas than stories, and has more respect for the word, written and spoken, than he does for the cinematic image itself. Something of a social philosopher, he is more interested in compelling intellectual statement than he is in an emotional moving image and is consequently drawn toward the more burning issues of the day (the Vietnam war, the student movement, etc.)

At the same time, he rarely sees any of these issues through to any logical conclusion, maintaining that it is precisely the illogicality of the issues themselves which ought command our interest; that his is the role of social critic, calling their absurdity to our attention.