Not quite up to the standard of TAXING WOMAN or SUPERMARKET WOMAN. A-ge-man ("Raise Up Organ") is a deliberately episodic tale, which takes slices of the lead character's life, beginning with her discovery as an abandoned baby, through childhood training as a somewhat gawky geisha, finding her first rich patron, then leaving the profession to work as a bank secretary.
Somewhat unexpectedly, most of the film concentrates on her time in the bank, and her gradually developing relationship with frequent co-star Masahiko Tsugawa, who plays a fast-upwardly mobile serial playboy. Even when he wins the lovely Nayoko and she lives with him, he doesn't stop screwing several other women at once.
On the plus side, the film has a lovely look, colourful with stunning costumes and sets. And lead actress Nobuko (also Itami's wife) looks radiant, though she is far from a young woman even here. Perhaps affirming this, there is a brief scene where she appears topless whilst looking in a mirror.
I felt the episodic structure wasn't done as well at it could have been, and that Tsugawa's character, while quite charming at times, grates because of his obviously unfaithful and inconsiderate nature.
Worth watching, but see a few other of Itami's great films first.
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