The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On (1987) Kazuo Hara

The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On (1987)
aka Yuki Yukite shingun

Genre: Documentary
Director: Kazuo Hara
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English (.srt file)
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Length: 121mn
File: Dvdrip Xvid Avi - 624x464 - 23fps - 698mb

The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On is an impassioned cinema verite-styled account of the one-man wrecking crew/dissident Okuzaki Kenzo. Okuzaki was an ex-Private of the 36th Engineering Corps who fought in the West Pacific during World War 2. Since the late 1950s, Okuzaki took it upon himself to right the wrongs of Japan's military past with unabashed zeal and self-ordained divinity. He has been a legendary thorn to the Establishment, tallying a long run of civic disobedience and political terrorism. In 1956 he killed a real estate broker and served 10 years in jail. He become notorious in 1969 for slinging small marbles at the Emperor in front of the Imperial Palace, for which he was for imprisoned 18 months. In 1976 he scattered pornographic handbills of the Emperor (14 months in jail). In 1981 he plotted an assassination of the ex-Prime Minister Tanaki Kanuei. And the list goes on. Okuzaki sees himself as a walking testament of political action over theory.

Hara's film follows Okuzaki in his latest crusade: getting to the bottom of the Japanese military execution of Privates Yoshizawa and Nomura, committed 23 days after the end of World War 2. Okuzaki is dogged in his determinism, tracking down ex-Officers of the 36th Corps, and insinuating himself into their homes (with Hara's camera of course) to conduct forceful interrogations of elderly and in some cases sick and frail men.

The first twenty minutes of this film, I almost forgot it was a documentary. The editing was so beautiful and touching. It gave me a completely refreshed view of what a documentary entails. This World War II Veteran hunts for the truth regarding the murder and cannibalism of a soldier. He tracks down former generals and, if need be, beats the information out of them. It was amazing how much dedication and time he spent to enlighten fellow citizens of the shameful acts that occurred in the war. Though it was slightly contradictory how he beat up generals, to bring past acts of violence to justice. I feel it was only necessary to accomplish his ultimate goal. I find that his behavior provokes genuine confessions of great significance from his former superiors. Leading to the unveiling of crucial information regarding misconduct and cannibalism.


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