A Night in Nude

Director: Takashi Ishii
Screenwriters: Takashi Ishii

Institute History

  • 1995 Sundance Film Festival


This year’s winner of the Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in Tokyo is a tale of passion and survival, set in the Japanese criminal underworld, which is both uniquely Japanese and universally intriguing. Jiro Kurenai is an “agent” (a unique Japanese vocation) who is hired by people to undertake tasks they don’t want to do. What makes his job unusual is that it includes almost anything.

Anxious to please whoever hires him, Jiro is an unprepossessing man whose manner is subservient and whose lifestyle is modest. When Nami, a fashionable woman in her late twenties, employs him to show her around Tokyo, a presumably innocuous activity, Jiro leaps at the opportunity. Unfortunately, he quickly becomes involved in the murder of a yakuza or gang lord (she asks him to dispose of the body), and when the murdered man’s friends seek out the killer, Jiro is enveloped in a morass of violence and revenge.

Wonderfully stylized, A Night in Nude juxtaposes innocence with betrayal and loyalty with savagery as we follow the story of a man transformed by circumstances and obligation. Using a fast pace and scintillating cinematography, Takashi Ishii mixes genres to both touch our hearts and amplify our understanding.

— Geoffrey Gilmore

Screening Details

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