On her way to meet her boyfriend, Sugiko is hit by a car and hospitalized. When she doesn't arrive at the meeting place, her boyfriend believes she has betrayed him, and he returns to his ... See full summary »
The Eunuch of the Emperor has ordered the commander of his army condemned to death for betrayal and insurrection. The commander's family was was murdered to cut off his bloodline, but his ... See full summary »
Ryoichi and Chikako are brother and sister. They live together. Chikako works during the day in a office and at night she prostitutes herself to fund her brother studies in univesity. ... See full summary »
A touching melodrama about a custody battle. Yoshiko Okada plays an actress who has won fame and fortune making movies in America. She now returns to Japan hoping to reunite with her six year-old daughter, who currently believes her ex-husband's second wife (Yukiko Tsukuba) is her biological mother. The ex-husband is sent to prison for mismanaging his company's funds, and the wealthy actress has an advantage over the now destitute Tsukuba. The film initially comes off as morally simplistic - Okada is the Westernized woman who is palling around with her two criminal brothers (the younger of whom provides some entertaining comic relief, but in general they aren't very useful characters) and Tsukuba is the noble, more traditionally Japanese woman who's willing to throw herself in front of a car to save her stepdaughter - but the characterization is beautifully done. In the end, both Okada and Tsukuba come off as sympathetic. Okada is the clear MVP among the actors - her final moment in particular is incredible. The little girl is absolutely adorable. Some things could be clearer. I was never clear who exactly the guy with the beard who helps Tsukuba was supposed to be. A friend? A brother? I feel like I missed something there. The filmmaking is wonderfully dynamic - tons of pans and tracking shots and perfectly edited. This one is pretty close to great.
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