Set on a tiny island off the Japanese coast, this is an austere saga from Kaneto Shindō (Onibaba).
The island’s sole inhabitants are a small family scraping a living from the sun-baked soil and laboriously carrying water across from the mainland every day.
Though set in modern-day Japan, there’s a medieval feel to their lives.
The film uses minimal dialogue, and action fans won’t find much to detain them.
But stick with it, and the dedicated performances and focused simplicity of Shindō’s style start to exercise hypnotic appeal.