When Sokichi stops providing his long-time lover Kikuyo enough money to pay for the care of their three young children, Kikuyo leaves the children with Sokichi - and his very surprised and angry wife Oume - and disappears.
A journalist interviews an old woman who was forced into prostitution, just like many other Japanese women working in Asia outside of Japan during the first half of the 20th century. She worked in a Malaysian brothel called Sandakan 8.
The body of Sakai Hatsuko, a woman of 23 who has been slain with a knife, has been found in a forest. Some days later, Ueda Hiroshi, a 19-year-old shipyard worker, is arrested and charged ... See full summary »
CASTLE OF SAND is an engrossing, laid-back police procedural that captures your attention even when the plot seems fairly ordinary. A Tokyo cop (Tetsuro Tamba) is troubled when a retired cop is found brutally murdered, with no evidence save the vague recollections of a few townsfolk. At times, the story is reminiscent of a regional travelogue, but in learning more about Japan, Tamba hones in on a small set of likely suspects, but everyone is so agreeable that uncovering the truth becomes like rooting out the one hidden evidence of violence in a sea of potential data.
Regrettably, the film unravels in the final forty or so minutes, when the remainder of the story is told with musical accompaniment of a famous pianist. The plot becomes frankly loses credibility and even becomes rather nonsensical. The movie changes mood and style, and dripping with melodrama.
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