Crossroads

Gabriel Thibaudeau is the official composer and pianist for La Cinémathèque québécoise in Montréal. His performed compositions include a ballet score, and a new score for Robert Flaherty's Nanook of the North, arranged for flute, Inuit throat-singers, soprano, bass, and percussion, which he conducted at the 2005 Toronto International Film Festival.

(Jujiro, a.k.a. Shadows of Yoshiwara). This film's minimal plot displays deeply Japanese motifs: an older sister looks after her younger brother, and these two pure, naïve creatures are lied to, betrayed, and destroyed by the impure world of cynical adults. Highly experimental, in the spirit of the international avant-garde of the 1920s, the film features intense close-ups, a moving camera, graphic leitmotifs, subjective and point-of-view shots, and non-naturalistic costumes and sets. It belies its genre, for the action is set in ancient Japan-jidai-geki country-but lacks the obligatory series of swordfights, each more dramatic than the previous. Individual images produce the strongest impressions: Ippei Soma's dirty toes, a falling knife, pearls of water in the hair of the sleeping Akiko Chihaya. While Kinugasa's first independent experiment, A Page of Madness, features discontinuity, openness, and heterogeneity, his second, Crossroads, is characterized by unity and polish.

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