In Kitano Takeshi’s film Achilles and the Tortoise, a Japanese painter successively attempts to reproduce a number of twentieth-century art styles, from Cubism via Abstract Expressionism to body art.1 Although he starts off with an undeniable gift for drawing, his talent gets progressively lost as he immerses himself in imitating Western art movements that he only superficially understands; his life then gets mired in a yo-yo of burlesque failures and family crises....
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