Director: Ulrike Ottinger

Writer: Ulrike Ottinger

Stars: Setsuko Arakawa, Kiyotsugu Fujima, Takamasa Fujima


Re-Recording: Markus Böhm

Sounddesign: Markus Böhm



In Echigo in Japan the snow often lies several feet deep well into May covering landscape and villages. Over the centuries the inhabitants have organized their lives accordingly. In order to record their very distinctive forms of everyday life, their festivals and religious rituals. Ulrike Ottinger journeyed to the mythical snow country – accompanied by two Kabuki performers. Taking the parts of the students Takeo and Mako they follow in the footsteps of Bokushi Suzuki, who wrote his remarkable book “Snow Country Tales” in the mid-19th century. A beautiful vixen fox leads the two protagonists astray and they undergo a wondrous metamorphosis. As a man and woman of the Edo period they now travel through the past and again and again encounter the present: Temple children build the holy mountain Fuji-san out of snow; a woman weaver, producing flimsy crepe in the icy cold, is haunted by an evil mountain demon; at the festival of the gods of paths and roads the rice straw pyramid with New….