Cultural Bulletin
Cultural Bulletin is a quarterly magazine that provides an international view of creative work. We look to film, music, design and art as signifiers of our cultural moment.

WATCH: 永遠の処女 · The Eternal Virgin - Jorge Suárez-Quiñones Rivas


This excellent video essay - a joint project of MUBI and FILMADRID - finds actress Setsuko Hara in the films of Ozu Yasjirō, constantly alone in the shot.

On MUBI’s Noebook website, it states:

The Eternal Virgin has been edited using exactly the 71 shots from Ozu Yasujirō's films where the actress Hara Setsuko is absolutely alone in an indoor space during the complete length of the shot —which implies no visual, behavioural or oral interaction with any other character, even if they are offscreen, excluding as well those shots in which any voice or sound from a different character is registered, since voice and sound can create a link between different spaces and therefore precluding the main principle of absolute loneliness. Nevertheless, those shots that originally are part of a sequence of shots in which other characters take part are likely to be chosen as long as Hara Setsuko appears framed absolutely alone, with no interaction of any kind with other characters —therefore, being absolutely impossible to deduce any human presence around her by watching the isolated frame. As the structural, conceptual and semantic unit of this piece is the shot itself, every shots is taken in consideration as an independent unit, regardless what happens in the sequence that shot belongs to. As a result, what is obtained applying this premise are 71 shots from 6 different films with a total length of 13 minutes and 40 seconds where Hara Setsuko is seen absolutely alone in her daily routine: walking through corridors, opening and closing doors, preparing and having dinner, tidying up a room... An ode to the aesthetic power of banality enclosed in the Deleuzian Time-Image.

Find out more about this video on the Notebook website here.

FilmTom SilverComment