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.
In 1701, Lord Takuminokami Asano has a feud with Lord Kira and he tries to kill Kira in the corridors of the Shogun's palace. The Shogun sentences Lord Asano to commit suppuku and deprives ... See full summary »
Two young brothers become the leaders of a gang of kids in their neighborhood. Their father is an office clerk who tries for advancement by playing up his boss. When the boys visit the boss... 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 »
In Tokyo, Osen is the servant girl of an unscrupulous antiques dealer, Kumazawa, who takes in the penniless Sokichi Hata. Kumazawa mistreats Sokichi and Osen, while swindling some Buddhist ... See full summary »
From the Criterion Collection: "Among the first Japanese films to deal directly with the scars of World War II, this drama about a group of rank-and-file Japanese soldiers jailed for crimes... 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 »
Kobayashi's pitiless take on Japan's professional baseball industry is unlike any other sports film ever made. An excoriation of the inhumanity bred by a mercenary, bribery-fueled business,... 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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