A few snippets of archive footage from turn-of-the-century Japan provide the most arresting moments in this rarely more than adequate film of the Puccini warhorse (routine accompaniment from the Orchestre de Paris under James Conlon). What we get is a realist, meat-and-two-veg rendition in picture postcard 'Japanese' settings rigged up for the occasion on the coast of Tunisia, where the chief location is the heroine's unhappy home. Mitterrand's camera moves in and out from behind the paper screens with a certain nimbleness, but you'd be forgiven if you wanted a bit more cinematic flair from a movie billed as 'A Martin Scorsese Presentation'.
Cast and crew
Jing Ma Fan