Film - Feature | January 9 | 7-9 p.m. | Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive
Based on the Puccini opera Madame Butterfly (but changing the title character from geisha to noblewoman) and one of the first European films to depict Japanese culture, Harakiri was considered a lost film for decades until it was discovered in the mid-1980s in the Netherlands Film Museum. Intrigued with Asian design motifs and obsessed with authenticity, Lang obtained sets and costumes from the Hamburg Anthropological Museum to help create his fantasia of the Orient, filmed on the outskirts of Berlin. Refreshingly stereotype-free, the film demonstrates that silent film can rival opera in emotional impact (Tom Vick).
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