A classic melodramatic love tragedy addressing social inequality in feudal Japan, depicted in Kenji Mizoguchi's typical style. The nostalgic scenes of 1920s Tokyo provides a valuable visual... See full summary »
"Nani Ga Kanojo O So Saseta Ka", that is to say, "What Made Her To Do It?" is an excellent silent Japanese movie. It is a masterpiece film directed in the year 1930 by Herr Shigeyoshi Suzuki, an unknown film director for this German Count. His name deserves to be written down in the Teutonic crocodile leather agenda as one of those exotic directors that deserves more aristocratic attention and interest from now on.
That's because his film, based upon a popular "Shingeki" play (nothing in common with the metaphysical German theater although often as boring ) is a superb display of the Herr Suzuki's skillfulness and talent (elegant and discreet camera movements that emphasize the film action with introspectiveness and poetry). "Nani Ga Kanojo O So Saseta Ka" is a beautiful and tragic film in which realistic images are melded together with elements of social criticism. The oppression and miseries that the main character suffers during the film (from a gallery of different situations and ruthless characters) via Dame Sumiko's (Keiko Takatsu) performance is excellent and moving. Her presence on the screen is enough; her face displays and expresses (it seems that with no effort) the sorrow, the sensibility, the misfortunes and the little joy that she has to endure during the years of her life. This only breaks at the end of the work, when desperate, she is fed up of such a sad and undeserved miserable life (seeking revenge against society's selfishness).
This wonderful and must-see film was considered lost until that an incomplete copy (the lost sequences of the beginning and the end of the film are revealed thanks to explanatory inter-titles) appeared during recent years in the Russian Film Archives (it seems that those communists' greed has no limits they kept lost silent films, half of Germany ). The film was, in its time, one of the biggest successes of Japanese silent cinema.
And now, if you'll allow me, I must temporarily take my leave because this Germanic Count wants to enjoy his privileged life.
Herr Graf Ferdinand Von Galitzien http://ferdinandvongalitzi
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