When the patriarch of the Toda family suddenly dies, his widow discovers that he has left her with nothing but debt and married children who are unwilling to support her--except for her most thoughtful son, just returned from China.
While performing in a touring kabuki troupe, leading female impersonator Yukinojo comes across the three men who drove his parents to suicide twenty years earlier, and plans his revenge, ... See full summary »
On his deathbed, a wealthy businessman announces that his fortune is to be split equally among his three illegitimate children, whose whereabouts are unknown to his family and colleagues. A... See full summary »
Setsuko is unhappily to Mimura, an engineer with no job and a bad drinking habit. She had always been in love with Hiroshi but both of them failed to propose when Hiroshi left for France a ... See full summary »
Perhaps Kobayashi's most sordid film, Black River is an exposé of the rampant corruption on and around U.S. military bases following World War II. Kobayashi spirals out from the story of a ... See full summary »
Two years after the foundation of Musashino city, alongside a war almost about to end, Akiyama Michiko, descendant of an old samurai, and therefore rooted in traditional values, is an unhappy woman married to an opportunist, cold and extremely selfish intellectual man who doesn't even love her and would take advantage of her if necessary.
The story might be somewhat simple and boring to those not used to Japanese cinema, but the exceptional thing here is the outstanding camera work. Mizoguchi was one of the pioneering directors of Japanese cinema and his filmmaking style was ahead of its time.
The many sequence shots throughout the entire film are to be taken into account when watching this film; they point out Mizoguchi's amazing skills in filmmaking. It really looks like a modern film, or at least it seemed that way to me; I would have never thought this was from 1951.
For filmmaking students or film buffs this is a hidden gem, just as the entire Mizoguchi filmography is. It is really a shame that he is so underrated.
My score: 9.3/10
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