With HEART, BEATING IN THE DARK, Japanese director Shunichi Nagasaki remakes and reimagines his own 1982 movie of the same name. Filmed on both 35mm and Super-8 the movie attempts to recreate the punk energy and moral ambiguity of the original tale of a murderous couple on the run from their own consciences. That film was short (seventy minutes), grimy, claustrophobic and bleak. The remake is about people who are trapped even moreso than the original. Not only do we see the original dilemma - a young couple on the lam - played out, but this new couple meets the characters from the original film, still trapped by their past. And it's as though the director himself seems mired in the earlier version, incorporating actors and clips from that film. The resulting movie is an intellectually involved film about the nature of movie-making and taking a point of view, as well as about the original fears that coloured the first film. I found it an exhilarating and provocative movie, but I'm not sure how far it will make sense to anyone who hasn't seen the original.
YAMIUTSU SHINZO/HEART, BEATING IN DARKNESS played London 2006.
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