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The Masseurs and a Woman (1938)
"Anma to onna" (original title)

 |  Drama  |  7 July 1938 (Japan)
7.3
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 327 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 13 critic

Two blind masseurs travel to a mountain retreat. One of them falls for a visiting lady from Tokyo and investigates a series of thefts.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Shotaro Akagi
Shin'ichi Himori ...
Ayuko Hirano ...
Hiking girl
Toru Hirose ...
Hiking student
Zentaro Iijima ...
Kamekichi
Akio Isono ...
Hiking student
Hideko Kasuga ...
Okiku
Toshiaki Konoe ...
Hiking student
Chieko Kyotani ...
Oaki (as Chieko Kyoya)
Fusako Maki ...
Hiking girl
Mitsuko Miura ...
Hiking girl
Hiroshi Mizuhara ...
Hiking student
Masako Nakaido ...
Hiking girl
Ren Niki ...
Head clerk
Tsuneo Osugi ...
Kitaro
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Storyline

Two blind masseurs Toku and Fuku walk to a mountain retreat to work for the season. The film follows Toku and his interactions with his blind colleagues and various guests from the inns. Toku is attracted to a mysterious single woman, whom he can tell is from Tokyo by her scent. She is intrigued by him, but also makes friends with another visitor from Tokyo who is traveling with his young nephew. The bored nephew, looking for amusement, meets with the woman from Tokyo, as well as with Toku. A rash of thefts at the inns soon after they arrive causes Toku suspect one of these guests. Written by Will Gilbert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

7 July 1938 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

The Masseurs and a Woman  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Connections

Remade as My Darling of the Mountains (2008) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Very Good Film
4 April 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Director Shimizu's film is fairly unique, about a group of blind masseurs who go to work at a retreat in the mountains to ply their trade. Once there, one particular one named Toku massages a young woman from Tokyo (her name is never mentioned) who seems to be escaping or hiding something. He is very interested in her, as is a young man who brought his nephew to the retreat. a few things happen, but this film is not about action its about infatuation, trust and loneliness. What I find fascinating about this film is the emphasis on the characters, specifically the blind men. You see how aware they are of their surroundings, how they react to things and how they make their choices. The film is meant to play at a slow pace, so don't expect action. The film is about 66 minutes long, but I was waiting for the next scene to see what happens. Through use of multiple fade outs, you see how the scenes become a new situation in which to focus on. I have seen this director's "Ornamental Hairpin", which is also on the Janus films collection released domestically. I highly recommend it, because this is a director forgotten in the brilliance of Kurasawa, Ozu, Naruse, Mizoguchi, Kinoshita etc. If you like Japanese films from the past, you owe it to yourself to watch Shimizu. I really liked this slow moving but compelling film.


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