Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Review: Zen - ("Dogen, The Movie")

This isn't a full review, just a quick recommendation really.

'Zen' is a drama based on the life of Japanese Zen Master Dogen. Overall, I enjoyed it very much. Beautifully shot and well acted, although for me it was let down slightly by a couple of CGI scenes, especially one where Dogen attains enlightenment and flies into the sky on a huge lotus flower. I also suspect that much of the character drama and many of the characters were invented to create a story that works as a movie. There is a scene in which a Dogen advises a woman with a dying child to visit the every household in which no one has ever died. This is a parable I've heard attributed to both Buddha and Jesus, but not Dogen. It is peppered with some of Dogen's sayings - enough to get a flavour of his teachings.

It wasn't easy for me to get hold of a copy - I had to get it imported from Hong Kong, but for me it was a must-see.


The preview is here: Zen

And there is a more substantial review here: Religious film lacks thrill of temptation


  1. Thanks, I'll definitely grab a copy of this.

  2. Me, too. Kyle: Mail me Justin's copy of the film after you've seen it.

  3. The Asian movies has something that Hollywood doesn't has. maybe it's the language :) I'm not living even close to HK, but I'll try to get this movie somehow :) thank for the review!

  4. The Japanese Zen Master Dogen, is one of the best movies that I have ever read,I would like to download the trailer because I have never watched it !

  5. The Japanese are not very good actors? Seriously? Racist much?

    You have to watch something a little more serious than Godzilla movies to make a believable claim.