A Japanese box-office sensation in 1968, Kuroneko is a sparse, atmospheric horror story, adhering to Kaneto Shindo's philosophy of using beauty and purity to evoke emotion. Eccentric and more overtly supernatural than its breakthrough companion piece, Onibaba (1964), Kuroneko revisits similar themes to reveal a haunting meditation on duty, conformity and love.
In this magnificently eerie and romantic film - loosely based on the Japanese folktale The Cat's Return - a mother and daughter-in-law (Nobuko Otowa & Kiwako Taichi) are raped and murdered by pillagers, but return from the dead as vampiric cat spirits intent on revenge. As the ghosts lure soldiers into the bamboo groves, a fearless samurai, Gintoki (Kichiemon Nakamura), is sent to stop their reign of terror.
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