IMDb > The Lower Depths (1957)
Donzoko
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The Lower Depths (1957) More at IMDbPro »Donzoko (original title)

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Overview

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7.6/10   2,798 votes »
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Release Date:
1 October 1957 (Japan) See more »
Genre:
Plot:
In a Japanese slum, various residents play out their lives, dreaming of better things or settling for their lot. Among them is a man who pines for a young woman but is stymied by her deceptive family. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Awards:
5 wins See more »
NewsDesk:
(22 articles)
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 (From ScreenDaily. 5 August 2014, 4:08 AM, PDT)

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 (From ScreenDaily. 21 October 2013, 5:38 AM, PDT)

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 (From Rope Of Silicon. 22 March 2013, 12:17 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
Very underrated Kurosawa masterpiece See more (26 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Toshirô Mifune ... Sutekichi the Thief
Isuzu Yamada ... Osugi the Landlady
Kyôko Kagawa ... Okayo, Osugi's Sister
Ganjirô Nakamura ... Rokubei, Osugi's Husband
Minoru Chiaki ... Tonosama - the former Samurai
Kamatari Fujiwara ... The Actor
Akemi Negishi ... Osen the Prostitute
Nijiko Kiyokawa ... Otaki the Candy-Seller
Kôji Mitsui ... Yoshisaburo the Gambler
Eijirô Tôno ... Tomekichi the Tinker
Haruo Tanaka ... Tatsu
Eiko Miyoshi ... Asa, Tomekichi's Wife
Bokuzen Hidari ... Kahei the Pilgrim
Atsushi Watanabe ... Kuna
Kichijirô Ueda ... Shimazo the Police Agent
Yû Fujiki ... Unokichi
Fujitayama ... Tsugaru
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Directed by
Akira Kurosawa 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Maxim Gorky  play "The Lower Depths"
Akira Kurosawa 
Hideo Oguni 

Produced by
Akira Kurosawa .... producer
Sôjirô Motoki .... associate producer
Tomoyuki Tanaka .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Masaru Satô 
 
Cinematography by
Kazuo Yamasaki 
 
Film Editing by
Akira Kurosawa 
 
Production Design by
Yoshirô Muraki 
 
Costume Design by
Yoshiko Samejima 
 
Makeup Department
Yoshiko Matsumoto .... hair stylist
Junjirô Yamada .... hair stylist
 
Production Management
Hiroshi Nezu .... production supervisor
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Yoshimitsu Banno .... assistant director (as Yoshimitsu Sakano)
Toshi Kaneko .... assistant director
Yasuyoshi Tajitsu .... assistant director
 
Art Department
Kôichi Hamamura .... property master
Jun Sakuma .... assistant art director
 
Sound Department
Ichirô Minawa .... sound effects editor
Mimachi Norase .... chief sound assistant
Fumio Yanoguchi .... sound
Shoichi Yoshizawa .... sound assistant
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Masao Fukuda .... still photographer
Shigeru Mori .... lighting technician
Katsumi Murakami .... assistant lighting technician
Takao Saitô .... assistant camera
 
Editorial Department
Chozo Kobata .... negative cutter
 
Other crew
Mitsugu Narita .... production assistant
Teruyo Nogami .... script supervisor
Yûichi Yoshitake .... acting office
Georges Goldfayn .... french subtitles by (uncredited)
H.L. Govaers .... french subtitles by (uncredited)
 
Crew believed to be complete


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Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Donzoko" - Japan (original title)
See more »
Runtime:
137 min | 125 min
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
1.37 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Australia:M (2007) | Finland:K-3 (new rating: 2001) | Finland:S (until 2001) | UK:PG | USA:Not Rated | West Germany:16
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
The entire set was built at a 75 degree angle, making the housing structure look dilapidated and in disrepair.See more »
Movie Connections:
Version of Na dne (1978)See more »

FAQ

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23 out of 25 people found the following review useful.
Very underrated Kurosawa masterpiece, 18 December 2003
Author: David (davidals@msn.com) from Chapel Hill, NC, USA

LOWER DEPTHS perhaps isn't the place to start if you're completely unfamiliar with Kurosawa - but it still ranks as one of his great films, and definitely one of his most underrated.

Based on a Maxim Gorky play (an earlier Jean Renoir film draws upon the same source material), LOWER DEPTHS seems a bit stagey at first, but Kurosawa manages to enliven it considerably - the performances are all top-notch, and the combination of skillful editing (straight cuts only here, but the usual Kurosawa multi-camera shooting method) and inventive set design (with diagonals and angles trapping characters, heighetning the intensity of the dialogue and acting) making this an unforgettable film to watch - easily as accomplished as the better known THRONE OF BLOOD from a little earlier. One will definitely note how tightly constructed - in all ways - this film is.

This film does (along with IKIRU, RED BEARD and HIGH & LOW) illuminate some of Kurosawa's underlying philosophies, specifically a sense of social realism in cinema that can cast a critical gaze upon injustice, and in this film a sense of anger and frustration is articulated with an unusual degree of eloquence, testament to both Kurosawa's technical virtuosity, and his greater awareness of the world.

But for all of the cruelty on display here, there's an equal amount of humor, typically irreverent and loaded with sly social commentary, but also spontaneous: the two impromptu musical episodes, which blend Japanese theatrical conventions with a Chaplin-like sense of visual choreography to very striking effect.

Not as well known as SEVEN SAMURAI, THRONE OF BLOOD or YOJIMBO, but just as accomplished - filled with delight and insight.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Lower Depths (1957)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
I can't be the only one, can I? kkhitman1
Donzoko (?) what mean? albawhall
Why the very strange English subtitles? melinda2001
I HATE this movie! That's what makes it great! (?) cpt761
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