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The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On

Documentary 2h 2m 1987

In their best-known and most highly regarded film, Kazuo Hara and Sachiko Kobayashi follow Kenzo Okuzaki—a 62-year-old veteran notorious for slinging pachinko balls at the Japanese emperor—on his single-minded campaign to denounce imperialism and expose the truth about war atrocities committed by Japanese officers in New Guinea in 1945. Consistently recognized as a masterpiece of nonfiction cinema—and a favorite of both Michael Moore and Errol Morris—The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On peels back deeply disturbing aspects of Japanese history in order to provocatively evoke considerations of retribution, ethics and the nature of evil.

“On my list of the 10 best movies ever. You have all these layers: the underlying historical reality, the obsessed and crazed Mr. Okuzaki pursuing that historical reality despite all odds, and the obsessed and quite possibly crazed filmmaker pursuing Mr. Okuzaki.” —Errol Morris

  • Best New Director, Directors Guild of Japan
  • Best New Director, Directors Guild of Japan
  • Caligari Film Award, Berlin International Film Festival
  • Best Film, Japan Film Pen Club
  • Best Director & Best Film, Mainichi Film Concours

Streaming in the U.S. and Canada from June 4-July 2 as part of Cinema as Struggle: The Films of Kazuo Hara & Sachiko Kobayashi | Also available in the U.S. and Canada as a part of our discounted 5-Film Bundle 1 for $30


Kazuo Hara





Bonus Content

Introduction by Kazuo Hara and Sachiko Kobayashi

To commemorate 50 years of Shisso Productions, Japan Society presents a newly-recorded introduction for The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On by Kazuo Hara and Sachiko Kobayashi.

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