Glowing Autumn starts out like a dark-hued Rembrandt, loses some focus like an Impressionist painting by Monet, and finally descends into the chaos of Jackson Pollack dribbling paint all over the helpless canvas. The sensuality of the images remains compelling, but their clarity and style have abruptly changed. In the clear and well-wrought beginning of the film, a woman (Kyoko Maya) is on a brief vacation in Kyoto when she is smitten by an innocent young photographer - he stands in sharp contrast to the erotic obsessions of her older lover, whom she is trying to jettison. She gets back to Tokyo and continues to develop her relationship with the photographer, but finds she has become hooked on the eroticism of her former lover - who keeps on interrupting her life when she least expects it. A mystifying part of their erotic pasttimes involved Persian rugs, and when her lover dies he leaves her a round-trip ticket to go load up on the carpets in Iran (before Khomeini). At this point, the story takes a flying leap and lands in Iran as she goes on her carpet hunt. Then the naive photographer shows up and drives them both into spasms of uncontrolled hilarity as he enthuses over mass-producing Persian carpets in Japan. This is where the film begins throwing sensual images around like a Pollack, but does not tie them together as in the earlier scenes. The viewers themselves will have to decide what the intent of the director (Masaki Kobayashi) might have been.
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