The Face of Another
Many movies made in postwar japan cinema concerned themselves with the usa’s identification disaster, particularly the position of the man or woman within a extensively converting society. Possibly no film of the generation articulated this extra chillingly than hiroshi teshigahara’s the face of every other, which finds the critically burnt (and slightly psychotic) okuyama (tatsuya nakadai) obtaining and sporting a high-tech, realistic mask to wear with a view to prevent sympathetic souls from feeling sorry for his invisible man-esque bandaged face.
Sci-fi is given an invigorating jolt of idiosyncrasy by using teshigahara, from the great visuals (okuyama’s mad health practitioner’s workplace is designed in a style that can be defined as “b-film modernism”), to the characters’ many and chronic discussions on how identification is perceived through others. This latter thing even provides the movie a clinical didacticism that efficaciously conjures up okuyama’s alienation from his very own people. Just like the film’s japan, which we see to be more and more stimulated by using western way of life, okuyama drastically changes underneath the affect of the masks, in his case for the worst; teshigahara exposes the slippery and fragile nature of identity, and that it’s much less in our manipulate than we’d want to accept as true with.