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A Japanese Tragedy (1953)

Nihon no higeki (original title)
Alternating in time, between the end of World War II and 1953, Haruko, a widow, does what she can to keep her daughter Utako and son Seiichi safe, fed, and sheltered. By 1953, it's clear ... See full summary »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Yûko Mochizuki ...
Haruko Inoue
Yôko Katsuragi ...
Haruko's daughter
Masami Taura ...
Haruko's son
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Keiko Awaji ...
Wakamaru, a geisha
...
Ichizo
Nadao Kirino
Tanie Kitabayashi ...
Ichizo's wife
Yôshirô Kusakari ...
Ichizo's son
...
Tatsuya, street musician
Fujio Suga ...
Teiji Takahashi ...
Sato
Sanae Takasugi ...
Mrs. Akazawa
Jun Tatara
Ken Uehara ...
Masayuki Akazawa, the English teacher
Eijirô Yanagi ...
Iwami
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Storyline

Alternating in time, between the end of World War II and 1953, Haruko, a widow, does what she can to keep her daughter Utako and son Seiichi safe, fed, and sheltered. By 1953, it's clear that the children, as they enter adulthood, want little to do with their mother. They have a different view of their childhood and her sacrifices: in their eyes, she abandoned them to live a life of pleasure. The self-pitying Haruko is sure her life was one of pain and humiliation, for her children. As Seiichi, now a medical student, announces his plans to let a wealthy man adopt him, and as Utako considers the offer to go away with a married man who is her English teacher, what is left for Haruko? Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

30 May 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Japanese Tragedy  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

 
Japanese Melodrama
13 February 2006 | by (Belgium) – See all my reviews

During and after WWII, a mother provided for her two children by becoming a prostitute. Now grown up, her son and daughter, social climbers both, find her an embarrassment and abandon her.

Director Kinoshita's rather obvious attempts to link this story to the greater problems of Japanese society by frequently inserting newspaper headlines and documentary footage is a distraction more than anything else.

Fortunately, he seems to give up on that idea around the halfway point to concentrate on what is at heart a great melodrama, with a fine performance by Yûko Mochizuki as the mother and a masterfully filmed climactic scene


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