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Gion bayashi (1953)

 -  Drama  -  11 June 1978 (USA)
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 931 users  
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In the post-war, the sixteen year-old teenager Eiko seeks out the geisha Miyoharu in the district of Gion, in Kyoto asking her to be a "maiko" (apprentice of geisha). Eiko explains that her... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Michiyo Kogure ...
Miyoharu
Ayako Wakao ...
Eiko
Seizaburô Kawazu ...
Kusuda
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Saburô Date ...
Imanishi
Kyôko Hisamatsu ...
Young girl
Sumao Ishihara ...
Kokichi
Kanae Kobayashi ...
Hairdresser
Keiko Kobayashi
Midori Komatsu ...
Oume
Kanji Koshiba ...
Kanzaki
Kazuko Maeda ...
Maid
Ryusuke Maki
Tokiko Mita ...
Apprentice geisha #1
Kikue Môri ...
Domestic arts teacher
Chieko Naniwa ...
Okimi
Edit

Storyline

In the post-war, the sixteen year-old teenager Eiko seeks out the geisha Miyoharu in the district of Gion, in Kyoto asking her to be a "maiko" (apprentice of geisha). Eiko explains that her mother, who was a geisha and Miyoharu's friend, has just passed away; her father Sawamoto has failed in business; and her uncle is harassing her. Miyoharu is a warm-hearted woman and accepts to train her. One year later, Eiko's father refuses to be her guarantor and Miyoharu borrows a large amount from the tea-house owner Okimi to buy her kimono and debut in a party. Miyoharu changes Eiko's name to Miyoe and introduces the teenager to clients as her sister. Soon Miyoharu is charged for the money but neither she nor Miyoe wants to have patrons. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

11 June 1978 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Geisha  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Referenced in Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has to Travel (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A visual feast, although not Mizoguchi's best
30 June 2012 | by (Mexico) – See all my reviews

Kenji Mizoguchi, an important figure in the history of Japanese cinema, is very well known for his collaboration on the portrayal of Japanese women on screen; one of the first reasons for this being his sister, who was sold to a geisha house by his father's decision. This highly contributed to his attachment to highlighting women on his films.

This is another film where geishas and their lives are involved. The story concerns one geisha and her apprentice, who is supposed to have the will to take the training into full practice and seriousness. Everything seemed fine when the training was in process, but when it came to conclusion, Eiko (the apprentice) had to debut as a geisha, but could not bring herself to accept her chosen client. Likewise, Miyoharu (Eiko's trainer), finds trouble when rejecting a client in love with her. Both rejected clients happened to be wealthy businessmen important to the geisha house where they worked, thus finding problems from there on.

While the film may not be Mizoguchi's best, I can assure it is a wonderful joy to behold its cinematography. The camera positions and movements are just something to appreciate, accompanied by a totally honest and credible acting by pretty much every actor/actress involved.

If you have liked everything you have seen from this wonderful director, there is absolutely not any reason why you should not get your hands on this film.

My score: 7.5/10


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