Snow Country

2712. SNOW COUNTRY (1957-Japan). Directed by SHIRO TOYODA. Based on a novel by Nobel Prize-winning writer VASUNARI KAWABATA. This poetic and allegorical romantic drama tells the deeply poignant and personal story of what it means when two people fall in love and one of them is not completely available to make a permanent commitment. It is the story of Shimamura, an artist. who is returning to Tokyo from a sojourn to a hot-springs resort. He looks forlorn as he rides on a train and is lost in his thoughts. As he peers out the window at the snowy mountains, he visualizes a woman. She is Komako, a pretty young geisha he had met at the resort and with whom he has fallen in love. Komako is sweet and sensuous and Shimamura cannot get her out of his mind. However, his romantic idyll is certain to lead to complications: Shimamura arrives home to the familiarity of a wife to whom he has been married for what seems like an eternity. The multi-layered scenario charts Shirnamura’s plight as he spends time with Komako and eventually must make a momentous decision. Will he cling to the securily of the life he knows with his mate or abandon it for the beautiful and desirable Komako? Furthermore, how much will his own character and personality impact on his ultimate decision? What makes the film so interesting is that not all of the characters’ complex emotions are expressed verbally. Director Shiro Toyoda does a brilliant job of depicting their feelings via stark and evocative imagery. In Japanese with English subtitles. 133 minutes. Drama