Taki Kudo, Shamanic Medium of Tsugaru
watch a preview
by Yasuhiro Omori
produced in association with the National Museum of Ethnology, Japan
color, 78 min, 2001
Filmed between 1991 and 1997, Taki Kudo, Shamanic Medium of Tsugaru documents the final years of the charismatic Ms. Taki Kudo, a medium, healer and fortune teller. Every year she comes to Japan's sacred Mt. Osorozan, home of the Akakura grand shrine, where the mediums draw chopsticks for the best places to set up their booths. Summoning the spirits of the dead, she answers clients' questions with reassurances and criticisms from deceased relatives, and displays the elaborate shrines that families tend on behalf of their loved ones. Back in her own village, Ms. Kudo explains the power of her Buddhist rosary for prayer and healing and talks to ethnographer about her relationship with the gods and the process of spirit possession. She performs ceremonies for health and purification, and exorcises evil spirits and grudges by sending their paper representations floating downriver on a tiny boat.
This film is also available as part of the Five Films by Yasuhiro Omori collection.