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Camila Mari L.

Pagatpatan Arts 1 – E1

RASHOMON

Ever wonder where the title came from? As I look through it in the web, there is

what they call Rashomon effect. It refers to a situation when the same event is

described in significantly different ways by different people who were involved. This

effect can be seen in the varying testimonies of the witnesses.

This film has a lot of points where people can focus and reflect on. I have two

points which I want to expound. First is about gender inequality and how it affects ones

belief and judgement.

Gender inequality acknowledges that men and women are not equal and that

gender affects an individual's lived experience. Sexism may be defined as an ideology

based on the belief that one sex is superior to another.

In the film, Masago mocked the men when Tajomaru was not sure enough to

sacrifice his life to get her from her husband and Takehiro being not brave enough to

take revenge for what Tajomaru has done to her wife. Both of them were uncertain with

what should they have done in that situation. On the other hand, the commoner

commented that women use their tears to fool everyone.

With the concept of gender inequality, people tend to jump into conclusions

without taking into considerations all the possibilities. What if Masago is just really soft-

hearted that is why she cried without the intention of fooling everyone? What if in

Takehiro’s perspective, the bravest thing that he can do is not to get revenge for his wife
who betrayed him? And as for Tajomaru, are you willing to sacrifice your life for a

woman you just met?

We all have different perspectives and that what makes it hard for us to give our

criticisms. Weighing all their confessions, in my own opinion, I think that Tajomaru killed

himself. How did I come up with this conclusion? Aside from analyzing the film, I also

did some research. In the movie, it implies that Tajomaru was a samurai. In Japan,

samurais strictly follow a moral code and they are willing to commit suicide especially

when it concerns honor. Having her wife violated by Tajomaru and hearing her wife

saying that she can’t be with Tajomaru unless he dies; it induces a feeling of dishonor

and betrayal. But above all, since we are all different, in the end one cannot understand

the things that people do.

The second point which caught my attention is the priest whose faith in humanity

is shaking. This is very timely because we all know that in today’s generation, it is hard

to trust others. Even the woodcutter stated that everyone is selfish and dishonest and

keeps on making excuses. That it was inevitable to be suspicious of others in days like

this. Some of their testimonies given were for them to look good despite the false

statements.

“If men don’t trust each other, this earth might as well be hell.” Trust is one of the

foundations of a relationship and without it there would be no peace of mind and heart.

There will always be doubt. So in this world full of lies and manipulations, are you sure

you are trusting the right group of people?