Yabu no naka no kuroneko (Black Cat from the Grove)
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Yabu no naka no kuroneko (Black Cat from the Grove)
Set in feudal Japan, this atmospheric and violent ghost story (whose title literally translates as The Black Cat in the Bush) begins with the brutal murder of two women by a band of mercenary samurai, whose leader is subsequently tracked down, seduced, and murdered by a young woman possessed by the shape-shifting specter of his victim. Called upon to avenge the warrior's death is none other than the woman's former husband, who has been ordered by his superiors to assassinate the guilty party. Plot twists abound as the older, vengeful spirit seeks to exact poetic justice despite the… More
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 94%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"An eerie, meticulously plotted samurai ghost story full of gorgeous visual flourishes."
‑ Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune
"A ghost story that's more eerie than unnerving, and often hauntingly lovely."
‑ Manohla Dargis, New York Times
"A masterpiece of quietly creepy Japanese horror."
‑ Ian Buckwalter, DCist
"The relationship between the object of our fear and our comprehension of it might be best described as a sliding scale, and Kuroneko suggests that it is in the realm of the uncanny - of knowing yet not knowing something - that true fear lies."
‑ Michael Nordine, Not Coming to a Theater Near You
"Cinematographer Kiyomi Kuroda's silvery atmospheric camerawork in "Onibaba" has taken a turn for the theatrical here, with deep shadows and dramatic lighting that serve this story as beautifully as his more naturalistic work in the prior film."
‑ Laura Clifford, Reeling Reviews
"Shind˘'s evocation of the central haunted bamboo grove is all night shadows and luminescent mist."
‑ Michael Atkinson, L.A. Weekly
"Nippo-Gothic horror fables have a long tradition of proto-feminist outrage... Kaneto Shind˘'s Kuroneko may take the cake."
‑ Michael Atkinson, Village Voice
"Kuroneko is one of the best supernatural horror tales ever made, and it has tons of spooky atmosphere to spare."
‑ Eric Melin, Scene-Stealers.com
"Because of the film's look and feel it has developed a sort of cult status and will be greeted voraciously by those who like their films politically reactionary"
‑ John Esther, UR Chicago Magazine
"With an invidious black cat meowing about, Shind˘'s movie, elegantly shot in widescreen black-and-white, melds Edgar Allan Poe and Oedipus Rex, all in sight of the legendary Rash˘mon Gate."
‑ Gerald Peary, Boston Phoenix
"There's a witchy, atmospheric timelessness to the movie that extends well past the unadorned sets."
‑ Ty Burr, Boston Globe
"Kaneto Shind˘ may be the least namechecked of Japan's go-to Golden Age directors. This ghost story, however, proves that he's ripe for reappraisal..."
‑ David Fear, Time Out New York
"moves fluidly between the cinematic invisible and the overtly theatrical, mixing impressive tracking shots and dexterous editing with attention-grabbing devices like rear-projection"
‑ James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk
"The combination of moody, widescreen, black-and-white cinematography, an unsettling pace, and chilling, hyperbolic performances makes for the sort of horror film that manages to seem classic and fresh at the same time."
‑ Marc Mohan, Oregonian
"The film morphs into an obsessively regretful dialectic that trips into tragedy after lugubrious, otherworldly speculation."
‑ Joseph Jon Lanthier, Slant Magazine
More reviews for Yabu no naka no kuroneko (Black Cat from the Grove) on Rotten Tomatoes