7.9/10
2,364
18 user 32 critic

Street of Shame (1956)

Akasen chitai (original title)
The personal tales of various prostitutes who occupy a Japanese brothel.

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2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Machiko Kyô ...
Mickey
Ayako Wakao ...
Yasumi
Michiyo Kogure ...
Hanae
Aiko Mimasu ...
Yumeko
Kenji Sugawara ...
Eiko
Yasuko Kawakami ...
Shizuko
Eitarô Shindô ...
Kurazô Taya
Bontarô Miake ...
Nightwatchman
Haruo Tanaka
Sadako Sawamura ...
Tatsuko Taya
Daisuke Katô ...
President of Brothel Owners' Association
Hisao Toake ...
Shiomi
Jun Tatara ...
Yumeko's client
Osamu Maruyama ...
Sato Yasukichi
Hiroko Machida ...
Yorie
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Storyline

Five prostitutes work at Dreamland, in Tokyo's Yoshiwara district. As the Diet considers a ban on prostitution, the women's daily dramas play out. Each has dreams and motivations. Hanae is married, her husband unemployed; they have a young child. Yumeko, a widow, uses her earnings to raise and support her son, who's now old enough to work and care for her. The aging Yorie has a man who wants to marry her. Yasumi saves money diligently to pay her debt and get out; she also has a suitor who wants to marry her, but she has other plans for him. Mickey seems the most devil-may-care, until her father comes from Kobe to bring her news of her family and ask her to come home. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Men were their prey! Beauty was their lure!

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

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Release Date:

4 June 1959 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Street of Shame  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was so popular with Japanese audiences upon its initial release, and so poignant in its portrayal of the lives of prostitutes that when an anti-prostitution law was passed in Japan just a few months later, some said it was a catalyst. See more »

Connections

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

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User Reviews

 
An Abstract
5 January 2005 | by (Halifax, NS) – See all my reviews

Upon first glance, this may seem like Mizoguchi re-hashing the themes and methods from his more successful films. And a lot seems to be read into the fact of this being his last film and, consequently, it somehow has to stand as a "swan song" or a culmination of his work. But it must be recognised that, form what I can tell, it was never meant to be so. This isn't like Kurosawa's "Madadayo" or Bergman's "Fanny and Alexander," but rather a more specific look at something he had always incorporated (the role of women in Japanese society) but had never attacked as specifically and focused as here. His famous female characters were appropriate vessels for his universal humanism, and he used their plights to make some of the more moving films of his era. But there is little universal going on in this film, it is a direct and poignant attack on a lack of change in a progressive area. The characters misfortunes all reinforce this ethical treatment, as opposed to examining any intrinsic leanings in the human soul. The film is more interesting than truly moving, and you won't see the emotional superlatives that are heaped on his other masterpieces. Still, it is an important film and it would have been interesting to see in which direction he would have gone after this.

4 out of 5 - An excellent film


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