After Japan's loss in the war, the wealthy, cultured, liberal Anjo family have to give up their mansion and their way of life. They hold one last ball at the house before leaving. The ... See full summary »
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Maria Luisa Geisberger,
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Set in the last few years of the shogun's rule, this period/ensemble movie depicts the lives of the young and the restless at a whorehouse. The protagonist is Saheiji, a resourceful, witty ... See full summary »
After Japan's loss in the war, the wealthy, cultured, liberal Anjo family have to give up their mansion and their way of life. They hold one last ball at the house before leaving. The seemingly cold, cynical son secretly grieves for his defeated father and the values that the war destroyed, while the daughter tries to prevent father from taking his life and to find her own place in the new Japan. Written by
John D. Baldwin <firstname.lastname@example.org>
This was a great look at how the bourgeois deal with the same situations as everyday people who face reality. The family feel self-assured and almost cocky that nothing is going to take away what they feel is their worth, but very soon it becomes apparent that the foundation to their wealth (and what they consider happiness) is weak and footed in imbalance. Yoshimura portrays a shift in post-war society, from the old realist regime to a new liberal dismantlement of the old. While films of the time reflected the underdog's role in a settling after war, the flipping of the script allows us to see the rich as human and personable, who can suffer just as much, but ultimately are still privileged above those of the underclass.
The film is just as much a vehicle for Setsuko Hara as it is for the directorial elegance of Yoshimura, bringing along a naivety evident in her Ozu roles. She appears to be the only character with a level-headed approach to her family's situation, attaining a level of strength above the men she is surrounded with. Overall, it's entertaining and drenched in allegory while also sustaining a dramatic lightness that makes it endearing.
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