The Naked Island

The Naked Island

Synopsis

The Naked Island is a fascinating early hybridization of documentary and fiction that takes to an important extreme the focus of Shindô’s early films on Japan’s working classes. An epic yet intimate chronicle of the daily lives and struggles of a farmer family on a remote Inland Sea island, Shindô’s internationally celebrated film revitalized the legacy of Flaherty’s Man of Aran and sharply divided Western critics, with the majority embracing Shindô’s poetic ethnography while others, led by Pauline Kael, critiqued the film as prurient exoticism. Today Shindô’s innovative use of non-actors to restage their own lives seems ahead of its time, equally innovative as the film’s use of a lush yet modernist score and near avoidance of dialogue – another remarkable updating and reinvention of Flaherty’s literary realism.” – Harvard Film Archive

Technical Specs

Director: Kaneto Shindō
Year: 1960
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Duration: 94 min
Colour: B/W
Alternate Title: Hadaka No Shima