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The Ballad of Narayama (1982)

Shohei IMAMURA, Japan

Peaceful living and dying are a central theme in this masterpiece by the Japanese Shohei Imamura, a literary film adaptation in the mountain region of Narayama. In a small mountain village on the edge of a valley, all who have turned seventy must leave the community and climb a certain mountain to die. Anyone who defies tradition brings misfortune to his own family. Orin is 69 years old and is about to climb the mountain this winter. But first she has to make sure that her eldest son Tatsuhei finally finds a wife. With "Narayama Bushiko", the Japanese Shohei Imamura has created what is probably his most beautiful film, a moving story about primordial questions of existence, staged in a fantastically beautiful Japanese mountain landscape and a nature in which people are a natural component. This nature includes coming and going, and this is what the film is about; existence is created between the two poles. This magnificent work, which has received several awards, has been reissued in a new copy.

«The novel by Shichiro Fukazawa, which forms the basis of this wonderful film, was an important source of inspiration for "Höhenfeuer" for me. This story about the inhabitants of a mountain village in the 14th century is at the same time a visionary parable about the threatening overpopulation of our planet.»

Fredi M. Murer
130 minutes
German, French
Video Quality
Available in
Switzerland, Austria, Liechtenstein