This is the twenty-eighth film I have watched in "My Letterboxd Season Challenge 2020-21", "A 33 week long challenge where the goal each week is to watch a previously unseen feature length film from a specified category." This is the 6th annual challenge, and my second time participating (last year can be found at "My Letterboxd Season Challenge 2019-20"). Week 28 is called "Eclipse Week".
Described by some as the B-sides of art house cinema. the Eclipse series by Criterion offers fairly underseen films a chance to garner a new audience through boxsets covering specific directors and writers, and even lesser known movements or moments in time. I realize that this is probably where you're going to have the most trouble tracking some of these down, but they're far from inaccessible. Well, in terms of availability anyway.
This week's challenge is to watch a previously unseen film from Criterion's Eclipse series.
I didn't realize until I started that Apart from You is a silent movie, despite its 1933 release. I knew nothing of the film beforehand ... I didn't know the work of writer/director Mikio Naruse, and I had only seen a couple of movies that included anyone from the cast of this one. This is a benefit of the Eclipse series. Indeed, of the 184 films in the above list, I had only seen 9 before Apart from You.
The movie only runs 61 minutes, and I admit I was glad, because I wasn't really captured by the film. There is some interesting material about the lives of geisha, and some sympathy towards them for being victims of poverty. But I never connected with the love story between the son of a geisha and another geisha who is his mother's co-worker. Also, Naruse makes good use of push-in shots that zoom in on a character, but after the 50th time, it was more annoying than effective.