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The Life of Oharu (1952)

Saikaku ichidai onna (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 20 April 1964 (USA)
Follows a woman's fight and survival amid the vicissitudes of life and the cruelty of the society.

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Writers:

(novel), | 1 more credit »
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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Tsukie Matsuura ...
Tomo, Oharu's Mother
Ichirô Sugai ...
Shinzaemon, Oharu's Father
...
Katsunosuke
Toshiaki Konoe ...
Lord Harutaka Matsudaira
Kiyoko Tsuji ...
Landlady
Hisako Yamane ...
Lady Matsudaira
Jûkichi Uno ...
Yakichi Ogiya
Eitarô Shindô ...
Kahe Sasaya
Akira Ôizumi ...
Fumikichi, Sasaya's Friend
Kyôko Kusajima ...
Sodegaki
Masao Shimizu ...
Kikuoji
Daisuke Katô ...
Tasaburo Hishiya
Toranosuke Ogawa ...
Yoshioka
Hiroshi Oizumi ...
Manager Bunkichi
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Storyline

A fifty-year-old prostitute, no longer able to attract men, looks back on her sad life. Once a lady-in-waiting at the imperial court at Kyoto, Oharu fell in love with, and became the lover of, a man below her station. They were discovered, and Oharu and her family were exiled. For Oharu there followed a life filled with one sorrow and humiliation after another. Written by George S. Davis <mgeorges@prodigy.net>

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Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

20 April 1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Life of Oharu  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jacques Rivette's favorite film See more »

Quotes

Katsunosuke: Lady Oharu, a human being - no, woman - can only be happy if she marries for love. Rank and money don't mean happiness.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Opening credits shown over Japanese artwork/water-colors. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kenji Mizoguchi: The Life of a Film Director (1975) See more »

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User Reviews

 
a masterpiece
1 April 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I cannot agree with the reviewer who commented that Mizoguchi does not have the aesthetic sensibility of Kurosawa or Ozu. In fact, he appears to me to be the true master of Japanese cinema. 'Oharu' is a marvellous achievement - a compassionate, beautiful account of a quite astonishing fall from privilege and grace into destitution and despair. It is unremittingly bleak and yet due to Mizoguchi's genius and Kinuyo Tanaka's luminous portrayal of the unlucky Oharu, it is a spiritually compelling work, with sheer artistry and simple human empathy competing for our attention in every take. Breathtaking film-making of the highest quality.


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