Kevin J. Wetmore, Jr.
Many scholars locate a Gothic tradition in Japan in the literary. However, historically an argument can be made for additional theatrical origins of the Japanese Gothic, locating it in the dramas and stage spectacles of nō and kabuki as much as literature. In turn, these forms shape and influence the Japanese cinema, creating a Gothic heritage of madness, ghosts, monsters, the erotic, death and the macabre through narrative and material culture. The film Gurozuka, through its depiction of a student film project adapting a nō play as a horror film, demonstrates how Japan’s Gothic cinema is haunted by its Gothic theatre.
KEYWORDS: kabuki, nō, Gothic, yūrei, Gurozuka, cinema, haunting