IMDb > The Life of Oharu (1952)
Saikaku ichidai onna
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The Life of Oharu (1952) More at IMDbPro »Saikaku ichidai onna (original title)

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Overview

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8.2/10   3,920 votes »
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Popularity: ?
Down 8% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
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Release Date:
20 April 1964 (USA) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
Follows a woman's fight and survival amid the vicissitudes of life and the cruelty of the society. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
2 wins & 1 nomination See more »
User Reviews:
Gentle consciousness-raiser See more (23 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Kinuyo Tanaka ... Oharu
Tsukie Matsuura ... Tomo, Oharu's Mother
Ichirô Sugai ... Shinzaemon, Oharu's Father

Toshirô Mifune ... 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
Haruyo Ichikawa ... Lady-in-waiting Iwabashi
Yuriko Hamada ... Otsubone Yoshioka
Noriko Sengoku ... Lady-in-waiting Sakurai
Sadako Sawamura ... Owasa
Masao Mishima ... Taisaburo Hishiya
Eijirô Yanagi ... Forger
Chieko Higashiyama ... Myokai, the Old Nun

Takashi Shimura ... Old Man
Benkei Shiganoya ... Jihei

Directed by
Kenji Mizoguchi 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Saikaku Ihara  novel "Koshuku Ichidai Onna"
Kenji Mizoguchi 
Yoshikata Yoda 

Produced by
Hideo Koi .... producer
Kenji Mizoguchi .... producer
Isamu Yoshiji .... executive producer
 
Original Music by
Ichirô Saitô 
 
Cinematography by
Yoshimi Hirano 
Yoshimi Kono 
 
Film Editing by
Toshio Gotô 
 
Production Design by
Hiroshi Mizutani 
 
Other crew
Isamu Yoshi .... historical consultant
 
Crew believed to be complete


Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Saikaku ichidai onna" - Japan (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
148 min | USA:133 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
This film, which was director Kenji Mizoguchi's dream project, was severely under-financed, and the production was forced to use a warehouse instead of a regular sound stage. This warehouse happened to be located near railways, and each time a train passed by, they had to stop shooting, which made the shooting of the film even more difficult with the director's obsessive use of long, continuous, uninterrupted takes. The same warehouse was also used for Josef Von Sternberg's film 'The Saga of Anatahan'.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 »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Flowing (1956)See more »

FAQ

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14 out of 19 people found the following review useful.
Gentle consciousness-raiser, 6 March 2003
Author: Lynne Bronstein from Santa Monica Ca

Mizoguchi's films are capable, I think, of teaching life lessons without preaching or grandstanding. This film could cause a male chauvinist to join a consciousness-raising make sensitivity group. In a simple,understated way, the film outlines the tyrannies that made happiness almost impossible for women, not only in feudal Japan, but all over the world. It comments on the use of women's bodies as sex objects and baby-making machines, with no regard for women's minds or feelings. Notice, by the way, that Oharu (Kinuyo Tanaka)is supposed to age from 18 to 50-and she really seems to age although makeup in the 1950s was not as advanced an art as it is now. The aging process is achieved through Tanaka's acting. And if she does not seem to us to be quite the ravaged old "witch" that one of her customers claims she is, then so much the better to let us know that she is being judged by an insensitive society.

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