9th Animation Division Excellence Award
THE BOOK OF THE DEAD
Animated feature film [Japan]
Reason for Award
This work is an undeniable masterpiece. The director KAWAMOTO Kihachiro, one of the leading puppet animation artists, also creates his own artistic puppets, 30 years after he was inspired by the author ORIGUCHI Shinobu’s original novel, and succeeded in making it into a great film. Taking place in Nara in the 8th Century, through an encounter of the spirits of a daughter of FUJIWARA-NANKE and Otsu no Miko who died a violent death, KAWAMOTO weaves a glorious and visionary story of human beings’ obsession and deliverance. A puppet animation, it is a mystic and fertile world structured by an incredible amount of time, energy, and sensitivity, and has a magical power which captivates viewers. It will be difficult to meet another such animation in the near future. In the beautiful silence which puppets weave, we cannot help feeling the strong will and high aspiration of director KAWAMOTO who is now in his 80s.