7.3/10
122,046
548 user 226 critic

Memoirs of a Geisha (2005)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance | 23 December 2005 (USA)
Nitta Sayuri reveals how she transcended her fishing-village roots and became one of Japan's most celebrated geisha.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (book)
Reviews
Popularity
2,033 ( 72)

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
Won 3 Oscars. Another 26 wins & 42 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A romantic police captain breaks a beautiful member of a rebel group out of prison to help her rejoin her fellows, but things are not what they seem.

Director: Yimou Zhang
Stars: Ziyi Zhang, Takeshi Kaneshiro, Andy Lau
4.13 Piano Concert (Video 2014)
Documentary | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  

A documentary in which many local piano artists play their favorite musics, such as classics, movie scores and traditional Japanese musics.

Director: Ryota Nakanishi
Action | Adventure | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Two warriors in pursuit of a stolen sword and a notorious fugitive are led to an impetuous, physically skilled, adolescent nobleman's daughter, who is at a crossroads in her life.

Director: Ang Lee
Stars: Yun-Fat Chow, Michelle Yeoh, Ziyi Zhang
Short | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

The process of how a fiance gets to the seaside where his bride is located in order to express and relive their dramatic encountering in a cinematic way.

Director: Ryota Nakanishi
Stars: Kkobbi Kim, Ryota Nakanishi
Short | Action | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Hikari is an actress who has contract with the agent Kazama. One day, Kazama forces Hikari to act in an adult video, as the result, Hikari goes mad and finds her mental partner Jey to consult with. Finally, Kazama destroys everything.

Director: Issey Matsui
Stars: Mizutani Hikari, Naoki Ide, Kazama
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
Thomas Ikeda ...
...
Hatsumomo (as Gong Li)
...
...
...
David Okihiro ...
Shamisen Teacher
Miyako Tachibana ...
Dance Teacher
Kotoko Kawamura ...
Granny
...
Koichi
...
Korin
Edit

Storyline

In the 1920s, 9-year-old Chiyo gets sold to a geisha house. There, she is forced into servitude, receiving nothing in return until the house's ruling hierarchy determines if she is of high enough quality to service the clientele -- men who visit and pay for conversation, dance and song. After rigorous years of training, Chiyo becomes Sayuri, a geisha of incredible beauty and influence. Life is good for Sayuri, but World War II is about to disrupt the peace. Written by Jwelch5742

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature subject matter and some sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

23 December 2005 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Memorias de una geisha  »

Box Office

Budget:

$85,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$682,504 (USA) (9 December 2005)

Gross:

$57,010,853 (USA) (10 March 2006)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

| |

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's winter light effect was discovered incidentally days before production. With the silk rigged to prevent rain water from damaging the set, the rigging crew attempted to emulate daylight during night. Gaffer John Buckley threw 3/4 lights from top to bottom of the set through the silk. Thus was the result and it was what Dion Beebe got which he went on to win Best Cinematographer of 2005. See more »

Goofs

When Chiyo's virginity is discussed, you can see Mother smoke cigarettes (in a holder). During the scene the length of the cigarette varies. See more »

Quotes

Chairman: [to Chiyo] Do you like sweet plum or cherry?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Will & Grace: Von Trapped (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Anata No Mono Yo
Written by Takao Saeki and Kouka Sassa
Performed by Noriko Awaya
Courtesy of Columbia Music Entertainment, Inc.
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Reminds me of Instant Lunch ramen...
14 December 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

With all of the negative reviews in my mind as I walked into the theatre, I braced myself for the worst. It turns out that my opinion of the film that seemed to raise so much controversy over casting and language fell in line with neither the vehemently negative, nor the positive accolades of the critics who hail it as one of the best films of the year. Instead, I left the theater feeling ambivalent, not quite sure to sing its praises or to decry it completely.

One thing is for sure, the film is gorgeous. There are scenes where the colour seems to bleed off the screen, and some just look like portraits. That being said, the film seems to have forgotten subtlety as a facet of art. Memoirs of a Geisha feels like a distinctly American period film, a fabrication marked by artificiality. Instead of using the actors as a vehicle for conveyance, our eyes are instead drawn to the set design, the framing, the cinematography (at least, for me).

Everyone is probably sick of all the discussions about the casting of Zhang Ziyi, Michelle Yeoh, and Li Gong, but I'm going to raise it again. As a Chinese-American, it was strange for me to see three actors who don't look Japanese play the part of the geisha. Additionally, the fact that the film is in English also proved problematic because although Michelle Yeoh's English is quite polished, Li Gong and Zhang Ziyi's English is definitely not. Much of the time, I was struggling to understand what they were saying (a gripe that I've seen mentioned by many others). The inconsistency of the dialogue (e.g., different accents from different characters, sporadic Japanese words during English conversation between characters)detracted from the film for me, because I had to keep asking myself, "Why is this not in Japanese?" In the end, the film feels like a cup of instant ramen. It's satisfying and tasty when the hunger pangs strike, but an hour later, you're left wondering why you didn't just go for something a little more substantial than freeze-dried noodles in a broth made from water and MSG. Memoirs of a Geisha is an entertaining film, but I don't think I could sit through it again.


259 of 438 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?