Genji, the son of the emperor, has gained renown among the nobility for his charm and good looks, yet he cannot stop himself from pursuing the one object of desire he can never obtain: his father’s young and beautiful bride. Following the tragic consequences of his obsession, Genji wanders from one affair to another, always seeking some sort of resolution to his life.
The film is an adaptation of a classic work of Japanese literature written in the early 11th century. Screenplay by Kaneto Shindo and literary supervision by Junichiro Tanizaki.
“One of the strengths of Japanese film-making in the fifties was the ability to make visual symphonies out of chamber music, so to speak, and this is a superb example of that skill. The result is one of the most sumptuously beautiful black and white films you are likely to see.” (Japan On Film)