Shûbun (1950)

Approved  |   |  Drama  |  17 July 1964 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.4/10 from 2,129 users  
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A celebrity photograph sparks a court case as a tabloid magazine spins a scandalous yarn over a painter and a famous singer.


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Shirley Yamaguchi ...
Miyako Saijo (as Yoshiko Yamaguchi)
Yôko Katsuragi ...
Masako Hiruta
Noriko Sengoku ...
Eitarô Ozawa ...
Otokichi Hiruta
Shin'ichi Himori ...
Editor Asai
Ichirô Shimizu ...
Fumiko Okamura ...
Miyako's mother
Masao Shimizu ...
Tanie Kitabayashi ...
Yasu Hiruta
Sugisaku Aoyama ...
Dr. Kataoka
Kokuten Kôdô ...
Old Man A
Kichijirô Ueda ...
Old Man B
Bokuzen Hidari ...


Famous singer Miyako Saijo, who is publicity shy, and motorbiking artist Ichirô Aoye, who has minor celebrity, meet by chance in Kappazawa while Ichirô is on a painting expedition, and Miyako is on a retreat. As she has missed her bus to Kaminoyu and as Ichirô is heading there anyway, he offers her a ride to the resort where both of them are staying and which is largely empty as it is the off season. As he visits her in her room solely as a measure of friendship and camaraderie, they are unaware that a paparazzo working for scandal sheet Amour has taken a photograph of the two of them together on her balcony. Hori, Amour's publisher, decides to print the photograph along with an accompanying salacious story on what could have happened based on the photograph, but which is a total fabrication. Hori has done such before with other celebrities, never having been sued as he believes his subjects either like the publicity or are too busy or scared to take action. A libel suit he feels will... Written by Huggo

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Release Date:

17 July 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Escándalo  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The story for the film was inspired by real events from Japanese tabloids writing things about celebrities; specifically a famous actress. Akira Kurosawa wrote about the nameless actress in his autobiography, saying "I reacted as if the thing had been said about me" describing the tabloid as using a "weapon of publicity" against someone. See more »


Silent Night, Holy Night
Music by Franz Gruber
Sung at the Christmas gathering
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User Reviews

Sixty Years On, Still Relevant
16 August 2011 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This film is about an artist named Ichiro Aoye (the great Toshiro Mifune) who by chance meets up with a famous singer Miyako Saijo (the very pretty Shirley Yamaguchi) while he is on a mountain painting. He drives her on his motorcycle to town and they happen to be staying in separate rooms at the same inn. A picture of them together, though not in any way with each other, is taken and causes a tabloid sensation. Ichiro decides to sue for libel and a very flawed lawyer (the equally great Takashi Shimura) takes the case. This film was done in 1949, yet it somehow remains relevant. Substitute Ichiro and Miyako with any celebrities you like and you'll get the idea. Mr. Shimura's character is so deeply explored you understand the pain, but may not like the man. Mr. Mifune is his usual solid self in this role and the film says a lot about privacy, hurt, pain and possibly even evil and redemption. Highly recommended.

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