5.0/10
21
2 user 1 critic

Geisha Girl (1952)

Approved | | Comedy, Romance | 2 May 1952 (USA)
"Rocky" Wilson and his sidekick, Archer McGregor, American soldiers en route home from Korea, stop over in Tokyo. They instantly get involved in a sabotage plot and, inadvertently, end up ... See full summary »

Directors:

(as George Breakston),

Writer:

(original screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview:
...
Rocky Wilson (as William Andrews)
...
Peggy Burnes
Archer MacDonald ...
Archie MacGregor
Tetsu Nakamura ...
Tetsu Nakano (as Tetu Nakamura)
Heihachirô Ôkawa ...
Police Inspector (as Henry Okawa)
Dekao Yokoo ...
Zoro
Michiyo Naoki ...
Michiko
Ralph Nagara ...
Betto
Benny Teitel ...
American Soldier (as Sgt. Benny Teitel U.S. Army)
Charles Zanolli ...
American Soldier (as Cpl. Charles Zanolli U.S. Army)
Richard Wiederholt ...
American Soldier (as Pvt. Richard Wiederholt U.S. Army)
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Storyline

"Rocky" Wilson and his sidekick, Archer McGregor, American soldiers en route home from Korea, stop over in Tokyo. They instantly get involved in a sabotage plot and, inadvertently, end up in the possession of some highly-explosive pills. But, with the help of Peggy Barnes, an American airlines hostess, and a crazy magician with hypnotic powers, they put an end to a scheme to take over the world. (Shot entirely in Japan.) Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

2 May 1952 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tonchinkan Spy sôdô  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Schizophrenic little travelogue, filmed in occupied Japan
26 March 2004 | by (The wilds of New Mexico) – See all my reviews

This movie is not so much entertaining as it is mystifying. For whom was this film intended? How did it get made, and why?

The plot: Japanese gangster types (with suggestions that they are backed by communists) have developed little pills, each of which is more powerful than an atomic bomb. They intend to demonstrate the power of the pills, then hold the world for ransom. Enter two G.I.s on leave who bumble into the plot. Add a airline stewardess drafted to play spy (!), a geisha house, and a mesmerist, and you have what was intended to be a wacky comedy, but instead comes off rather like a propaganda film for cultural tolerance.

Large parts of the film are given over to sympathetic views of Japanese artistic traditions, with extensive stage performances. When the G.I.s make lascivious assumptions about the geishas, their host is careful to point out that Americans have the wrong idea about geishas, and explains their years of training to become perfect entertainers.

But in contrast other Japanese are portrayed as bumbling buffoons -- the gangsters are silly rather than threatening (played very large, even to the point of eyepatches), the cops are of the Keystone variety, and the mesmerist looks like the inspiration for Johnny Carson's "Great Karnak".

This film really feels like it was made with the army's blessing (uniformed soldiers appear as actors, with their army rank given in the credits) and was designed to be shown to the troops stationed overseas. On the one hand, the film preaches respect for Japanese culture and art. On the other hand, Japanese are shown as non-threatening and not to be taken seriously.

And parts of the film look like they were designed to be filmed in 3-D!

Truly, an odd little film. It gives a glimpse of early-50's occupied Japan (even to the point of a woman turning her face away from Americans she passes on the street) but the comedy relief is weak and overall the film makes one's thumb itch for the fast forward. I wouldn't go far out of my way to see it (nor did I -- just happened upon it and back it goes on the trade stack) but if you stumble across it you might give it a spin.




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