Stray Dog, A Gun, The Individual and Society in Shinji Aoyama’s “An Obsession”


Shinji Aoyama’s film An Obsession (1997) is a loose adaptation of Akira Kurosawa’s film Stray Dog (1949). Aoyama has borrowed the main plot of a cop losing his gun to a criminal, whom the detective relates to but must hunt down and bring to justice. A discussion of similarities and differences is followed by an examination of the main themes of each respective film. Kurosawa’s theme can seen as an existential question in which the answer is found in how to live one’s life in the postwar society-for society or oneself. However, for Aoyama, the main theme is concerned with the existential question of whether to live or not, which is essentially an individual decision.

Author Information
Patrick D. McCoy, Meiji University, Japan

Paper Information
Conference: FilmAsia2014
Stream: Film Criticism and Theory

This paper is part of the FilmAsia2014 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon