Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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6.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 4 Ratings

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  • Summary: Like a detective story, the film untangles the web of influences behind Japan’s captivation with insects. It opens in modern-day Tokyo where a single beetle recently sold for $90,000 then slips back to the early 1800s, to the first cricket-selling business and the development of haiku andLike a detective story, the film untangles the web of influences behind Japan’s captivation with insects. It opens in modern-day Tokyo where a single beetle recently sold for $90,000 then slips back to the early 1800s, to the first cricket-selling business and the development of haiku and other forms of insect literature and art. Through history and adventure, Beetle Queen Conquers Tokyo travels all the way back in time to stories of the fabled first emperor who named Japan the “Isle of the Dragonflies.” (Argot Pictures) Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. The Japanese love affair with insects takes many forms, but most of them are, by Western standards, exotic. To Oreck's credit, she doesn't attempt to play down the exoticism by pretending to go native.
  2. Reviewed by: Justin Chang
    90
    Eschewing character arcs and talking heads in favor of a more poetic approach, this lyrical exercise in avant-garde entomology is the work of an intuitive filmmaker with an often hypnotic sense of composition.
  3. A delightfully weird, if occasionally too arty, documentary as darting in its structure as a dragonfly's flight.
  4. A documentary that is often told in adages, riddles and poetry.
  5. I’m not wholly clear on the link between a jellied green thing wriggling along a tree branch and the oneness of life, but Shinto Buddhist ruminations sound good in almost any context, and the film is entrancing.
  6. There's no shortage of fascinating segments.
  7. Reviewed by: Gary Goldstein
    60
    A meditative piece that is by turns hypnotically beautiful and painfully slow. It's the kind of film perhaps best appreciated in smaller doses, in the same way bench rest can help sustain a tiring museum visit.

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