Kinema Junpo's Top 10/30 Japanese Movies (By Year)

by Melvelet | created - 14 Feb 2014 | updated - 16 Feb 2014 | Public

Each year, Kinema Junpo magazine publishes a list of the top 10/top 30 Japanese films of the year (sometimes more due to ties). From 1926 to 1942: 10 films (1930: 3 modern and 3 period films) From 1943 to 1945: cancelled due to war (1946 shortened to 8) From 1946 to 1954: varying between 19 and 32 films Starting from 1955: Top 30 for each year (up to 3 more due to ties) For 2013 I currently have the Top 10 only...

This is not the complete list because some of the films are missing from IMDb. You can see a longer list and rankings for each year at the list source: http://www.rinkworks.com/checklist/list.cgi?u=crimsong&U=crimsong&p=kinemajunpotop10s

Films translated from this website: http://cinema1987.org/kinejun/

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1. Ashi ni sawatta onna (1926)

Comedy

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Director: Yutaka Abe | Stars: Tokihiko Okada, Yôko Umemura, Kôji Shima, Kan'ichi Tani

1926

2. Nichirin: Kôhen (1926)

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Director: Minoru Murata | Stars: Kaichi Yamamoto, Eiji Nakano, Eiji Takagi, Kumeko Urabe

3. Riku no ningyo (1926)

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Director: Yutaka Abe | Stars: Komako Sunada, Kan'ichi Tani, Mineko Tsuji, Yôko Umemura

4. Kurutta ippêji (1926)

70 min | Drama, Horror

7.6
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A man takes a job at an asylum with hopes of freeing his imprisoned wife.

Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Stars: Masuo Inoue, Ayako Iijima, Yoshie Nakagawa, Hiroshi Nemoto

Votes: 1,828

5. Karabotan (1926)

Comedy

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Director: Hôtei Nomura | Stars: Shin'ichi Akita, Jun Arai, Hideo Fujino, Chôko Iida

6. Kaminingyô no haru no sasayaki (1926)

100 min

6.2
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Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Tokihiko Okada, Yôko Umemura, Kaichi Yamamoto, Kôji Shima

Votes: 6

7. Tenraku (1926)

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Director: Kintarô Inoue | Stars: Shûsuke Kuritomi, Teruko Makino, Tsukie Matsuura, Yoshitomo Nara

8. Mito Kômon (1926)

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Director: Tomiyasu Ikeda | Stars: Kaichi Yamamoto, Gorô Kawabe, Tamitarô Onoe, Jûrô Tanizaki

9. Kumo (1926)

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Director: Reinosuke Aku | Stars: Toyonosuke Arashi, Tsumanosuke Bando, Tsumasaburô Bandô, Kunie Gomi

10. Chuji tabi nikki: Shinshu kessho hen (1927)

7.5
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Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Enichiro Mikawa, Hideo Nakamura, Haruo Okazaki

Votes: 22

1927

11. Son'nô jôi (1927)

Action

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Director: Tomiyasu Ikeda | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Tamitarô Onoe, Haruko Sawamura, Jûrô Tanizaki

12. Chuji Tabinikki Daisanbu Goyohen (1927)

107 min

7.3
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Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Hideo Nakamura, Kichiji Nakamura, Seinosuke Sakamoto

Votes: 62

13. Karakuri musume (1927)

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Director: Heinosuke Gosho

14. Jihi shinchô (1927)

2 min | Short

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Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Kaichi Yamamoto, Eiji Nakano, Tokihiko Okada, Eiji Takagi

15. Gerô (1927)

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Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Tetsuro Kaneko, Gorô Kawabe, Jo Kume, Haruko Sawamura

16. Rônin-gai - Dai-ichi-wa: Utsukushiki emono (1928)

Action, Drama

6.5
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Director: Masahiro Makino | Stars: Kômei Minami, Tôichirô Negishi, Tsuyako Okajima, Jûrô Tanizaki

Votes: 38

1928

17. Riku no ôja (1928)

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Director: Kiyohiko Ushihara | Stars: Denmei Suzuki, Emiko Yagumo, Hideo Fujino, Hisao Furuya

19. Sôzen-ji baba (1928)

31 min | Short

7.5
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Director: Masahiro Makino | Stars: Kômei Minami, Shinpei Takagi, Tôroku Makino, Tsukie Matsuura

Votes: 20

21. Mura no hanayome (1928)

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Director: Heinosuke Gosho | Stars: Harurô Takeda, Emiko Yagumo, Kinuyo Tanaka, Shôichi Kofujita

22. Keai-dori (1928)

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Director: Masahiro Makino | Stars: Tsukie Matsuura, Kômei Minami, Hiroshi Tsumura, Fumio Wakamatsu

23. Hiratemiki (1928)

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Director: Seika Shiba | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Yôko Umemura, Reisaburo Fujinami, Ginchô Segawa

24. Jûjiro (1928)

74 min | Drama

7.2
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After falling in love with a courtesan, Rikiya is blinded by ash during a fight in a brothel. Believing the blindness permanent and his opponent dead, Rikiya goes back home to his sister. ... See full summary »

Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Stars: Akiko Chihaya, Junosuke Bandô, Yukiko Ogawa, Ippei Sôma

Votes: 239

25. Kubi no za (1929)

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Director: Masahiro Makino | Stars: Jûrô Tanizaki, Umeko Sakuragi, Seizaburô Kawazu, Tsukie Matsuura

1929

27. Ikeru ningyô (1929)

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Director: Tomu Uchida | Stars: Isamu Kosugi, Takako Irie, Yutaka Mimasu, Eiji Takagi

28. Zanjin zanbaken (1929)

6.3
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In medieval Japan, a brutal and corrupt magistrate is planning to kill the child who is about to become the heir to the estate and position of the local lord and substitute his own "heir", ... See full summary »

Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Ryûnosuke Tsukigata, Hiroshi Kaneko, Misao Seki, Sôemon Wada

Votes: 12

29. Daitokai: Rôdô-hen (1929)

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Director: Kiyohiko Ushihara | Stars: Denmei Suzuki, Kinuyo Tanaka, Jun Arai, Hideo Fujino

30. Tokai kokyogaku (1929)

70 min

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Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Isamu Kosugi, Eiji Takagi, Kaichi Yamamoto, Takako Irie

31. Nani ga kanojo o sô saseta ka (1930)

85 min | Drama

6.9
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Directors: Shigeyoshi Suzuki, Yoneo Ota | Stars: Keiko Takatsu, Rintarô Fujima, Yôyô Kojima, Hidekatsu Maki

Votes: 82

1930

32. Ojôsan (1930)

135 min | Comedy

3.9
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Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Sumiko Kurishima, Tokihiko Okada, Tatsuo Saitô, Kinuyo Tanaka

Votes: 30

33. Zoku ôoka seidan mazohe daiichi (1930)

Action

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Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Takashi Ogawa, Yôko Umemura, Naoe Fushimi

34. Madamu to nyôbô (1931)

64 min | Comedy, Drama

6.5
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A writer struggles to finish his story against many distractions, but the jazz party next door proves to be too much.

Director: Heinosuke Gosho | Stars: Atsushi Watanabe, Kinuyo Tanaka, Mitsuko Ichimura, Satoko Date

Votes: 120

1931

36. Tôkyô no kôrasu (1931)

90 min | Comedy, Drama

7.4
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A married Tokyo man faces unemployment after standing up for an older colleague.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Tokihiko Okada, Emiko Yagumo, Hideo Sugawara, Hideko Takamine

Votes: 1,003

37. Ippon-gatana dohyo iri (1931)

4.3
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Director: Hiroshi Inagaki | Star: Chiezô Kataoka

Votes: 6

38. Adauchi senshu (1931)

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Director: Tomu Uchida | Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Yutaka Mimasu, Isuzu Yamada, Midori Komatsu

40. Seikatsu-sen ABC (1931)

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Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Hideo Fujino, Kinuyo Tanaka, Ureo Egawa, Michiko Oikawa

41. I Was Born, But... (1932)

Not Rated | 100 min | Comedy, Drama

8.1
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91 Metascore

Two young brothers throw a tantrum when they discover that their father isn't the most important man in his workplace.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Tatsuo Saitô, Tomio Aoki, Mitsuko Yoshikawa, Hideo Sugawara

Votes: 3,779

1932

42. Chûshingura (1932)

139 min | Drama

7.2
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Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Stars: Tomio Aoki, Juzaburo Bando, Kôtarô Bandô, Tsumasaburô Bandô

Votes: 5

43. Kokushi muso (1932)

Drama

6.4
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Director: Mansaku Itami | Stars: Shuichiro Atsumi, Junzaburô Ban, Chiezô Kataoka, Michisaburo Segawa

Votes: 11

44. Mushibameru haru (1932)

116 min

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Director: Mikio Naruse | Stars: Kinuko Wakamizu, Yumeko Aizome, Sumiko Mizukubo, Ryoichi Takeuchi

46. Joriku dai-ippo (1932)

88 min | Drama

6.5
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Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Ureo Egawa, Shin'ichi Himori, Chôko Iida, Akio Isono

Votes: 10

47. Dekigokoro (1933)

100 min | Drama

7.6
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Two Tokyo co-workers come across a destitute young lady in search of a place to live.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Takeshi Sakamoto, Nobuko Fushimi, Den Obinata, Chôko Iida

Votes: 1,011

1933

48. Taki no shiraito (1933)

110 min | Drama

7.5
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The tragic tale of a woman who despite doing good where she can gets punished by society.

Directors: Kenji Mizoguchi, Takuaki Seiryô | Stars: Tokihiko Okada, Ichirô Sugai, Bontarô Miake, Kumeko Urabe

Votes: 263

49. Yogoto no yume (1933)

64 min | Drama

7.1
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A single mother works tirelessly as a Ginza bar hostess to ensure a better life for her young son until--her long-lost husband returns.

Director: Mikio Naruse | Stars: Sumiko Kurishima, Tatsuo Saitô, Jun Arai, Mitsuko Yoshikawa

Votes: 352

50. Futatsu doro (1933)

Drama

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Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa

51. Apart from You (1933)

64 min | Drama

7.2
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Two Geisha with a connection to a young man deal with life's hardships.

Director: Mikio Naruse | Stars: Mitsuko Yoshikawa, Akio Isono, Sumiko Mizukubo, Reikichi Kawamura

Votes: 370

53. Bangaku no issho (1933)

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Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Kobunji Ichikawa, Hikaru Kanbe, Sakon Kataoka, Enichiro Mikawa

55. Koi no hana saku Izu no odoriko (1933)

94 min

7.0
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Director: Heinosuke Gosho | Stars: Kinuyo Tanaka, Den Obinata, Tokuji Kobayashi, Kinuko Wakamizu

Votes: 62

56. Hotta Hayato (1933)

Drama

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Director: Daisuke Itô | Stars: Shinpachirô Asaka, Seinosuke Hayashi, Ryôsuke Kagawa, Chiezô Kataoka

57. Koina no Ginpei (1933)

Drama

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The first half of the movie depicts a man's jealousy of his best friend and the woman he love. The second part depicts a hero who is ready to put the past behind him and risk his life for ... See full summary »

Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Stars: Kazuo Hasegawa, Toshiko Iizuka, Jûshirô Kobayashi, Yasuro Shiga

58. Ukikusa monogatari (1934)

Not Rated | 86 min | Drama

7.9
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A kabuki actor's mistress hatches a jealous plot to bring down her lover's son.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Takeshi Sakamoto, Chôko Iida, Kôji Mitsui, Rieko Yagumo

Votes: 2,370

1934

59. Tonari no Yae-chan (1934)

76 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

7.3
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Keitaro (Obinata Den) is a law student and Yaeko (Aizome Yumeko) is a high school girl. They are neighbors, and their friendship is starting to develop into something more romantic. Then, ... See full summary »

Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Yumeko Aizome, Ryôtarô Mizushima, Den Obinata, Chôko Iida

Votes: 161

60. Ikitoshi ikerumono (1934)

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Director: Heinosuke Gosho

61. Budo taikan (1934)

Drama

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Director: Mansaku Itami | Stars: Kunitaro Bando, Seinosuke Hayashi, Ryôsuke Kagawa, Chiezô Kataoka

62. Ashigaru shusse-tan (1934)

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Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Satoko Date, Minoru Fujisaki, Ranko Hanai, Seitarô Hayashi

63. Hokushin Nihon (1934)

Documentary

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Directors: Navy Commander Shibata, Captain Taketomi | Star: Chûzô Aochi

64. Sono yo no onna (1934)

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Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Kinuyo Tanaka, Sachiko Murase, Tatsuo Saitô, Kenji Ôyama

65. Ippon-gatana dohyo iri (1934)

Drama

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Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa

66. Muteki (1934)

7.0
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Director: Minoru Murata | Stars: Josuke Hara, Keiko Ichijo, Sawako Karamatsu, Nobuo Kosaka

Votes: 5

67. Gantarô kaidô (1934)

89 min | Drama

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Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Shuichiro Atsumi, Kunitaro Bando, Minoru Fujisaki, Naoe Fushimi

68. Wife! Be Like a Rose! (1935)

74 min | Drama

7.7
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A young woman reaches maturity and yearns to know about her father. Her mother has poisoned her mind about the man who left her for another woman. There is a tender moment when they see ... See full summary »

Director: Mikio Naruse | Stars: Sachiko Chiba, Yuriko Hanabusa, Toshiko Itô, Setsuko Horikoshi

Votes: 249

1935

69. Machi no irezumi mono (1935)

74 min | Drama

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Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Chôemon Bandô, Fujiko Fukamizu, Hisako Hara, Emitaro Ichikawa

70. Shunkinsho: Okoto to Sasuke (1935)

100 min | Drama

6.7
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Sasuke loves Okoto, a blind musician. When she befalls a terrible disfigurement Sasuke can't bare it which escalates into a shocking climax.

Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Kinuyo Tanaka, Kôkichi Takada, Hideo Fujino, Chôko Iida

Votes: 26

71. Chûji uridasu (1935)

7.8
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Director: Mansaku Itami | Stars: Shinobu Araki, Ryônosuke Azuma, Tokumaro Dan, Kensaku Haruji

Votes: 5

72. Kunisada Chûji (1935)

103 min | Drama

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Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Fujiko Fukamizu, Ranko Hanai, Jun'nosuke Hayama, Heikuro Imanari

73. Jinsei no onimotsu (1935)

66 min | Comedy

6.9
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An aging couple truffle to pay for their daughter's marriages while keeping their much younger son from feeling left out.

Director: Heinosuke Gosho | Stars: Tatsuo Saitô, Mitsuko Yoshikawa, Masao Hayama, Yoshiko Tsubouchi

Votes: 81

74. Uwasa no musume (1935)

54 min

6.8
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The suitor rejects elder sister Kunie but likes Kimoko, the younger one. Their father and his mistress have separate shops. Kimiko suddenly learns that she is her mother. Business is bad. The police visit when business shortcuts are taken.

Director: Mikio Naruse | Stars: Sachiko Chiba, Kamatari Fujiwara, Toshiko Itô, Kô Mihashi

Votes: 82

75. Tôkyô no yado (1935)

80 min | Drama

8.0
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Unemployed Kihachi and his two sons struggle to make ends meet. But that doesn't keep Kihachi from wooing single mother Otaka.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Takeshi Sakamoto, Yoshiko Okada, Chôko Iida, Tomio Aoki

Votes: 937

76. Yukinojô henge: Daiippen dainihen (1935)

97 min | Drama

6.9
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Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Stars: Kazuo Hasegawa, Tokusaburo Arashi, Akiko Chihaya, Naoe Fushimi

Votes: 29

77. Gion no shimai (1936)

95 min | Drama

7.7
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Two geisha sisters lead a hard life in the Gion district of Kyoto. After one of them feels obliged to support a bankrupt businessman, the other sister sets up various schemes to get rid of him.

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Isuzu Yamada, Yôko Umemura, Benkei Shiganoya, Eitarô Shindô

Votes: 1,861

1936

78. Jinsei gekijô (1936)

118 min | Drama

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Director: Tomu Uchida | Stars: Yôko Benisawa, Hisao Furuya, Hajime Hikari, Hikaru Hoshi

79. Osaka Elegy (1936)

90 min | Drama

7.4
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A young woman becomes a mistress of her boss in order to support her family.

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Isuzu Yamada, Seiichi Takegawa, Chiyoko Ôkura, Shinpachirô Asaka

Votes: 1,560

80. Hitori musuko (1936)

Not Rated | 87 min | Drama

7.9
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A widow sends her only son away to receive a better education. Years later, she visits him, finding him a poor school teacher with a wife and son.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Chôko Iida, Shin'ichi Himori, Masao Hayama, Yoshiko Tsubouchi

Votes: 2,347

81. Akanishi Kakita (1936)

77 min

6.5
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Director: Mansaku Itami | Stars: Chiezô Kataoka, Shôsaku Sugiyama, Sôjin Kamiyama, Yôko Umemura

Votes: 61

82. Ani imôto (1936)

60 min | Drama

7.0
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Director: Sotoji Kimura | Stars: Yuriko Hanabusa, Katsuji Honjo, Setsuko Horikoshi, Yoshio Kosugi

Votes: 12

83. Hikyô nekka (1936)

15 min | Documentary, Short

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84. Kagirinaki zenshin (1937)

Drama

7.4
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Director: Tomu Uchida | Stars: Isamu Kosugi, Hisako Takihana, Yukiko Todoroki, Akihiko Katayama

Votes: 11

85. The Straits of Love and Hate (1937)

108 min | Drama

7.0
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A young couple of lovers want to travel to Tokio to work and form a family there, but the parents of him want his son to regent their hotel. Finally, he does what his parents want him to, and her finds herself abandoned in the big city.

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Taizô Fukami, Akira Harue, Kiyoshi Katô, Seizaburô Kawazu

Votes: 122

86. Children in the Wind (1937)

88 min | Drama

7.3
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Two young boys are usurped from being the head of their gang of children by the son of the man who indicts their father on charges of embezzlement. Their father is fired and arrested for ... See full summary »

Director: Hiroshi Shimizu | Stars: Reikichi Kawamura, Mitsuko Yoshikawa, Masao Hayama, Tomio Aoki

Votes: 174

87. Hadaka no machi (1937)

121 min

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Director: Tomu Uchida | Stars: Ryô Akaboshi, Mitsuru Date, Hisao Furutani, Haehiko Fuyuki

88. Wakai hito (1937)

83 min | Drama

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Director: Shirô Toyoda | Stars: Mrs. Algert, Yuriko Hanabusa, Chitose Hayashi, Haruyo Ichikawa

89. Ninjô kami fûsen (1937)

86 min | Drama

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The lives of two slum neighbors, one of a happy-go-lucky gambler and the other of a poor ronin, converge when the two get involved with the affairs of a powerful samurai official and his gangsters.

Director: Sadao Yamanaka | Stars: Chôjûrô Kawarasaki, Kan'emon Nakamura, Tsuruzô Nakamura, Chôemon Bandô

Votes: 1,377

90. Shukujo wa nani o wasureta ka (1937)

71 min | Comedy, Drama

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An affluent medical professor, Komiya, and his bossy wife, Tokio, are to look after Setsuko, their high-spirited niece from Osaka. Setsuko is a liberated woman who does what she wants, ... See full summary »

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Sumiko Kurishima, Tatsuo Saitô, Michiko Kuwano, Shûji Sano

Votes: 650

91. Ôsaka natsu no jin (1937)

Drama

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Director: Teinosuke Kinugasa | Star: Kazuo Hasegawa

92. Asakusa no hi (1937)

104 min | Drama, Romance

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

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Director: Yasujirô Shimazu | Stars: Ken Uehara, Mieko Takamine, Shin'ichi Himori, Reikichi Kawamura

Votes: 17

93. Five Scouts (1938)

73 min | Drama, War

6.6
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Director: Tomotaka Tasaka | Stars: Isamu Kosugi, Bontarô Miake, Shirô Izome, Ichirô Izawa

Votes: 26

94. Robo no ishi (1938)

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Director: Tomotaka Tasaka | Stars: Torao Aoki, Mitsuru Date, Donguriboya, Ureo Egawa

95. Shanghai (1938)

81 min | Documentary

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Director: Fumio Kamei | Star: Suisei Matsui

96. Tsuzurikata kyoshitsu (1938)

87 min | Drama

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

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Director: Kajirô Yamamoto | Stars: Hideko Takamine, Musei Tokugawa, Nijiko Kiyokawa, Shiro Mizutani

Votes: 22

97. Uguisu (1938)

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Director: Shirô Toyoda

98. Nakimushi kozo (1938)

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Director: Shirô Toyoda | Stars: Yumeko Aizome, Mitsugu Fujii, Fumio Hayashi, Haruyo Ichikawa

99. Abe ichizoku (1938)

105 min | Drama

5.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  

Jidai-geki surprisingly critical of bushido codes and practice of seppuku (aka hara-kiri). Yaichiemon Abe, denied permission to commit ritual suicide with more than a dozen vassals to Lord ... See full summary »

Director: Hisatora Kumagai | Stars: Chôjûrô Kawarasaki, Kan'emon Nakamura, Shizue Yamagishi, Masako Tsutsumi

Votes: 10

100. Aa kokyo (1938)

64 min

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Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Fumiko Yamaji, Masao Shimizu, Seiichi Katô, Seizaburô Kawazu