The Pillow Book

Synopsis: As a young girl in Japan, Nagiko's father paints characters on her face, and her aunt reads to her from "The Pillow Book", the diary of a 10th-century lady-in-waiting. Nagiko grows up, obsessed with books, papers, and writing on bodies, and her sexual odyssey (and the creation of her own Pillow Book) is a "parfait mélange" of classical Japanese, modern Chinese, and Western film images.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Peter Greenaway
Production: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  5 wins & 2 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
126 min

It was on my fourth birthday...

When my aunt was reading

Sei Shonagon...

That I saw my father and

his publisher together...

For the first time.

Though I'm certain that any clear

understanding of what I had witnessed...

Would have to wait

until I was much older.

on my sixth birthday...

At the Matsuo Tiasha shrine

in Kyoto,

Encouraged by my aunt,

I vowed I would keep

a diary.

A pillow book of my own.

I would fill it with

all manner of observations,

Just like Sei Shonagon.

Perhaps one day, like her,

I could fill it with accounts

of all my lovers.

on the same day as I started

to keep my own pillow book,

I met my future husband

for the first time.

I was six.

He was ten.

We did not exchange a word.

He had been handpicked

by my father's publisher.

like Sei Shonagon, my sense

of smell was very strong.

I enjoyed the smell of paper

of all kinds.

It reminded me

of the scent of skin.

my mother had

taught me mandarin.

When my father painted

a Japanese greeting...

On my face on my birthday,

She played her favorite

Chinese record.

It had been popular when my

parents had met in shanghai.

in remembrance of my father

and in memory of Sei Shonagon,

I was determined to take lovers

who would remind me...

Of the pleasures

of calligraphy.

I could not be sure

which was more important-

An indifferent calligrapher

who was a good lover...

Or an excellent lover who

was a poor calligrapher.

I became a wife.

I married.

I acquired a husband.

Whichever way you say it,

It was bound to end badly.

I had a ceremonial wedding

in style.

separated from my parents

and my aunt,

I confided in my own pillow book

more and more frequently.

Like the pillow book of Sei

Shonagon, it was full of lists.

Unlike Sei Shonagon,

all the lists were negative.

that was the first fire.

There was to be a second.

Both fires marked

a big change in my life.

when I first arrived

in Hong Kong, I hid.

I lived in Kowloon city in the

cheapest rooming houses I could find.

I did not want to be found

by my parents...

Or by my husband.

I tried hard to improve the

Chinese my mother had taught me.

In the meantime,

I was determined...

To keep alive

my father's tradition.

I learned to type

on my 21st birthday,

I tried to give myself

my father's blessing.

I found work in the offices

of a Japanese designer.

And I was determined to speak

English with an American accent.

I was planning

to go to California.

Twenty meter of pale

green organdy, pattern 14.

A meter of type-b tulle.

Uh, the small net size.

The type-b tulle

with the small net size.

we went to Kyoto,

back to japan,

To work

in the Matuso Tiasha shrine,

Which Sei Shonagon

had visited regularly.

I couldn't give up

such an opportunity.

I was also

a little homesick.

We didn't finish walking

the catwalk until midnight...

When all the audience

had gone.

Sei Shonagon had watched

the moon rise in that garden...

A thousand years ago.

I could have walked up and down

that path all night long.

you are not in a position

to preach clean living.

oh, yes, I am.

And in blood red.

You could join us.

I'm too beautiful...

And too rich.

What's wealth got to do with

it? A great deal, I'd think.

I design material.

You can wear it.

Frighten the buyers.

Then I'd soon

cease to be wealthy.

You wouldn't need to be paid.

You would do it for free.

Oh, yeah?

what else would you

do for free?

I've been waiting to waste

my talent on your body...

For a little reward.

my search for the ideal

lover-calligrapher continued.

But it was becoming less and

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    "The Pillow Book" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 4 Mar. 2021. <>.

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