After introducing the world to the unforgettable Kenzo Okuzaki in The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On (1987), Kazuo Hara and Sachiko Kobayashi sought another extreme individual for their next project. They find him in Mitsuharu Inoue—an outspoken leftist writer and one of the foremost novelists of the postwar period whose larger-than-life personality attracts a cult-like following of students and former lovers. When they learn he is also battling cancer and may have not long to live, Hara and Kobayashi begin to record Inoue, following him from private drinking parties to public speaking engagements as he recounts his first love, impoverished adolescence and the revolutionary days of his youth—only some of which is true. An incredibly intimate portrait that revels in the blurred lines between fact, fiction and truth in Inoue’s self-mythologizing, A Dedicated Life captures the essence of an artist who approaches his life as a work of art in itself.
Streaming in the U.S. from June 4-July 2 as part of Cinema as Struggle: The Films of Kazuo Hara & Sachiko Kobayashi