CHARISMA | india | Hindustan Times
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CHARISMA

Goro Yabuike is a detective called in to rescue an MP held hostage by a lunatic. In a brief moment of uncertainty, he misses the opportunity for action. Chaos ensues and both the kidnapper and hostage die in the aftermath.

india Updated: Jul 18, 2003 16:26 IST
PTI

CHARISMA
Original Title:Karisuma
Japan, 1999
Director: Kiyoshi Kurosawa

Goro Yabuike is a detective called in to rescue an MP held hostage by a lunatic. In a brief moment of uncertainty, he misses the opportunity for action. Chaos ensues and both the kidnapper and hostage die in the aftermath.

Yabuike is banished until public reaction dies down. Leaving his job and family without explanation, he makes his way to a mountain forest. A single tree stands in the clearing. It is encircled by an IV pole and other paraphernalia for life-support. It is called Charisma. With its strange accessories, the tree is as mysterious as an object d’art.

As he drifts through the forest, Yabuike discovers that its inhabitants are pitted against each other in a battle over the tree’s destiny. Kiriyama, a young man who lives in an abandoned sanatorium, caring for a feeble old woman, devotes his days to nurturing Charisma.

Mitsuko Jinbo, the opinionated botanist, studies the forest’s ecosystems. A team of foresters roams the woods and plans to cut charisma down, while a group of planters schemes to buy or steal the tree. Captivated by the tree, Yabuike struggles to understand the truth.

Is Charisma a force of evil or an innocent victim? The enigma baffles Yabuike. How should he resolve it? He wavers, then acts.

Screenplay:
Kiyoshi Kurosawa

Cinematography:

Junichiro Hayashi

Editing:

Junichi Kikuchi

Music:

Gary Ashiya

Principal cast:

Goro Yabuike, Koji Yakusho, Naoto Kiriyama, Hiroyuki Ikeuchi, Satoshi Nakasone, Ren Osugi, Chizuru Jinbo, Yoriko Doguchi, Mitsuko Jinbo, Jun Fubuki

Production:
King Record Co. Ltd., Nikkatsu Corp., Tokyo Theatres Co. /
35mm / colour / 104 mins.

Director's bio-note: Kiyoshi Kurosawa was born in Kobe in 1955. He graduated with sociology from Rikkyo University, where he studied film with the influential theorist Shigehiiko Hasumi.

He began making 8mm films when he was in high school, and his first short film Shigarami was selected for the 1981 Pia Film Festival. In 1983, he made his debut as a commercial director with Kandagawa Wars, and went on to win an enthusiastic following with Excitement of the Do-Re-Mi-Fa Girl (1985) and The Guard from Underground (1992).

In 1992 he was awarded the Sundance Institute Scholarship for his original film script, Charisma. Cinefan 2003 is also showcasing another of his films, Cure.