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Japanese Avant-garde and Experimental Film Festival: Death by Hanging + The Educational System of an Empire at the Barbican

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Time 18:00
Date 22/09/19
Price £12.6

Nagisa Oshima faces a derisive issue head on, making a farce out of a (still) ongoing human rights issue—capital punishment.

R is a Korean who has, ostensibly, committed a crime worthy of death. In a circling overhead shot, Oshima’s film captures the ‘house’ of death where inmates will drink their last tea and breathe their last breath. But after hanging for over 20 minutes, R’s body won’t accept death.

Death by Hanging pits bureaucracy, ethics and spirituality against one another as the executioners debate re-hanging an already hanged man. Satire dressed in all the trappings of high drama comforts us in the midst of such a taboo subject without diluting our shock and disgust.

Death by Hanging is paired here with Hikaru Fujii’s The Educational System of an Empire where a group of young South Koreans are asked to re-enact the tyrannical actions of colonial Japan upon the nation of Korea.

Death by Hanging | Dir Nagisa Oshima | 1968 | 118 min
The Educational System of an Empire | Dir Hikaru Fujii | 2016 | 21 min