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Indiana University

Outreach

Video Lending Library

Japan

Program Title: Funabenkei [Benkei in the Boat]
EASC Code: JF-01
Series Title:
Region/Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Subtitles:
Subject: Theatrical Performance
Program Type: Feature
Media Type: VHS
Director:
Producer:
Release Date:
Running Time: 60 min.
Color or BW:
Program Abstract: "The story is part of the well-known cycle of the Genji-Heike clans. As the play opens, Yoshitsune has secretly left the capital to escape the anger of his older brother, Yoritomo, who suspects him of disloyalty. He and his chosen few come to the Bay of Daimotsu to take a boat for Kyushu, where he hopes to wait for better days in safety. His beautiful mistress, Lady Shizuka, the superb dancer, has followed him, but since the presence of a woman on this rough sea journey is inappropriate, Benkei, the stout warrior-priest and Yoshitune's devoted follower, advises her to return to Miyako. As she makes her farewells, sake is served and she performs a parting dance. In the second half, soon after the party leaves the place, the sea suddenly bemuses rough, and the ghost of Tomonori, one of the Heike chiefs, appears to sink Yoshitusne's boat in revenge for the defeat of his clan. Benkei prays mightily, and the vengeful ghost drifts away with the ebbing tide, leaving not a single trace on the snow-white waves." -- Kenneth Yasuda, Masterworks of the Noh Theater
Data Entry Date: 1/27/1999