IMDb > Women of the Night (1948)

Women of the Night (1948) More at IMDbPro »Yoru no onnatachi (original title)

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Release Date:
28 February 1979 (USA) See more »
A mistress of a drug dealer in post-war Japan is shocked when she discovers that he is having an affair with her sister. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 win See more »
User Reviews:
Raw Look at Some Taboo Subjects See more (9 total) »


  (in credits order)

Kinuyo Tanaka ... Fusako Owada
Sanae Takasugi ... Natsuko Kimijima
Tomie Tsunoda ... Kumiko Owada
Mitsuo Nagata ... Kenzô Kuriyama
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Hiroshi Aoyama
Fusako Maki
Kikue Môri
Sadako Sawamura
Ken Tanaka
Minpei Tomimoto
Kumeko Urabe ... brothel-keeper

Directed by
Kenji Mizoguchi 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Eijirô Hisaita  novel "Joseimatsuri"
Yoshikata Yoda  story

Produced by
Hisao Itoya .... producer
Original Music by
Hisato Osawa 
Cinematography by
Kôhei Sugiyama 
Film Editing by
Tatsuko Sakane 
Production Design by
Hiroshi Mizutani 

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Yoru no onnatachi" - Japan (original title)
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75 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful.
Raw Look at Some Taboo Subjects, 31 December 2013
Author: Michael_Elliott from Louisville, KY

Women of the Night (1948)

*** 1/2 (out of 4)

Set in post WWII Japan, director Kenji Mizoguchi's film deals with a pair of sisters (Kinuyo Tanaka, Sanae Takasugi) who find themselves going into prostitution due to the rather dire living conditions. WOMEN OF THE NIGHT is certainly a hard-hitting little gem that manages to hold no punches in regards to its subject matter. Several countries released films dealing with the aftermath of WWII but what's so fascinating about this film is the fact that it deals with subjects that most other places wouldn't touch. This includes prostitution obviously but there's also abortion, drug use, sexual transmitted diseases and other subjects that were a big no-no during this era. This off-topic subjects certainly help keep the film very fresh for today's viewers. Another fascinating thing were some of the streets where it's obvious they haven't been fixed up since WWII. I'm guessing these streets with debris all over them weren't just made up for the film and instead they are actually locations and these images really make you understand the desperate situation of the people living there. We get three different women and their stories of how they were forced to go into the business and each of them are quite touching on their own. I will say that the ending was a bit over-the-top and didn't reach the punch it was going for but it certainly didn't ruin the movie. The two lead performances are certainly wonderful and they're just so raw that you feel as if you're watching real people struggling. There are some rather bleak and ugly images to be found here and especially during a sequence where we see the downside of this lifestyle as most of the women are suffering from various mental problems. WOMEN OF THE NIGHT runs a very quick 74-minutes and it's certainly quite memorable.

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