Kaneto Shindô Films, Best To Worst

by godgetsmepumped | created - 11 Dec 2017 | updated - 11 Dec 2017 | Public

I still feel Shindô is terribly overlooked. I believe I have seen more of his films than any other Japanese filmmaker. This list only includes movies he DIRECTED. There are still many out there unavailable to English speakers, and there seems to be no movement to release anything obscure. This list contains the 22 I have seen, from best to worst.

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1. Human (1962)

117 min | Drama

The ship Kaijin Maru is left adrift after losing all means of navigation in a storm. The four people on the ship are becoming increasingly desperate as food and water run out.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Taiji Tonoyama, Nobuko Otowa, Kei Satô, Kei Yamamoto

Votes: 133

aka 'Ningen'

2. Love Betrayed (1973)

90 min | Drama

Kokoro is the story of a subtle and poignant friendship between two unnamed characters, a young man and an enigmatic elder scholar whom he calls Sensei. Haunted by tragic secrets that have ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Anri, Noboru Matsuhashi, Kazunaga Tsuji

Votes: 78

aka 'Kokoro'

3. The Conquest (1965)

119 min | Drama, History

A morally-suspect and self-serving retainer rashly baits her high-ranking employer, a regional governor, with a salacious story of a former acquaintance and catastrophe ensues.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Kyôko Kishida, Eitarô Ozawa, Isao Kimura

Votes: 60

4. Ôkami (1955)

127 min | Drama

Time; a few years after the surrender of Japan in the Second World War. The country is in ruins, economy devastated, and the vulnerable masses deprived of work; let alone the basic ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Sanae Takasugi, Taiji Tonoyama, Jun Hamamura

Votes: 65

aka 'Wolf'

5. Onibaba (1964)

Not Rated | 103 min | Drama, Horror

Two women kill samurai and sell their belongings for a living. While one of them is having an affair with their neighbor, the other woman meets a mysterious samurai wearing a bizarre mask.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Jitsuko Yoshimura, Kei Satô, Jûkichi Uno

Votes: 14,435

6. Kuroneko (1968)

Not Rated | 99 min | Drama, Horror

Two women are raped and killed by samurai soldiers. Soon they reappear as vengeful ghosts who seduce and brutally murder the passing samurai.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Kichiemon Nakamura, Nobuko Otowa, Kei Satô, Rokkô Toura

Votes: 5,602

7. Hymn (1972)

112 min | Drama

The story tells of the adoration of Sasuke for his mistress, the blind Shamisen teacher Shunkin, who treats him imperiously and subjects him to cruel beatings.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Tokuko Watanabe, Jiro Kawarazaki, Daijirô Harada

Votes: 55

aka 'Sanka'

8. Epitome (1953)

131 min | Drama

Shusei Tokuda's starkly realistic novel about a poor girl pressed into becoming a geisha was forcefully adapted by Kaneto Shindo (Onibaba). When Ginko (Nobuko Otowa, Shindo's wife) falls in... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Sumiko Hidaka, Isuzu Yamada, Sô Yamamura

Votes: 45

aka 'Miniature'

9. The Strange Tale of Oyuki (1992)

116 min | Drama

The film tells the story of Japanese writer Kafu Nagai (1879-1959), a man about sixty with a huge reputation of seducer who falls madly in love for a young geisha named Oyuki. Meticulous ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Masahiko Tsugawa, Yuki Sumida, Kazuyo Asari, Jun Hamamura

Votes: 128

10. Owl (2003)

119 min | Comedy, Drama

A mother and daughter living alone in a small village in deep Japan manage to get out of poverty seducing men, who offer their sexual services and then poisoned with a drink similar to sake.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Akira Emoto, Daijirô Harada, Mansaku Ikeuchi, Ayumi Itô

Votes: 106

11. Mother (1963)

100 min | Drama

Tamiko is a divorced mother with a seriously ill son, struggling to save him and give both a sense of their existence. She lives with her mother and brother, but will marry a man older than... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Haruko Sugimura, Homizu Aratani, Kentarô Kaji

Votes: 79

12. Postcard (2010)

114 min | Drama, Romance, War

Toward the end of World War II, middle-aged soldier Keita is entrusted with a postcard from a comrade who is sure he will die in battle. After the war ends, Keita visits his comrade's wife ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Etsushi Toyokawa, Shinobu Ôtake, Naomasa Musaka, Akira Emoto

Votes: 205

13. The Life of Chikuzan (1977)

119 min | Drama

After over 50 years of wandering up and down Japan, finally in the 1970s the rough-hewn blind shamisien player and folk-song collector named Chikuzan became a musical sensation. This ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Ryûzô Hayashi, Nobuko Otowa, Mitsuko Baishô, Dai Kanai

Votes: 72

14. Live Today, Die Tomorrow! (1970)

120 min | Drama

After leaving high school, Michio Yamada (Norio Nagayama in the real life incidents) becomes involved in the shudan shushoku, a post-war Japanese government work program which involves ... See full summary »

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Daijirô Harada, Nobuko Otowa, Keiko Torii, Kiwako Taichi

Votes: 127

16. The Ditch (1954)

111 min | Drama

Postwar Tokyo. Pin (Jukichi Uno) and Toku (Taiji Tonoyama) live in the squatter area of Kappanuma. Pin and Toku are avid gamblers. They take in Tsuru (Nobuko Otowa), a slightly demented woman who has run away from a geisha house.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Taiji Tonoyama, Jûkichi Uno

Votes: 54

17. The Naked Island (1960)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama

A family of four are the sole inhabitants of a small island, where they struggle each day to irrigate their crops.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Taiji Tonoyama, Shinji Tanaka, Masanori Horimoto

Votes: 4,561

18. Lucky Dragon No. 5 (1959)

115 min | Drama

The story of a Japanese fishing boat whose crew were accidental victims of fallout from the Bikini hydrogen bomb tests.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Jûkichi Uno, Nobuko Otowa, Harold Conway, Masao Mishima

Votes: 55

19. Edo Porn (1981)

Not Rated | 119 min | Biography, Drama, History

The famous woodblock artist Hokusai (1760-1849), a widower in need of a steady income, lives with his daughter Oei in the house of his friend Bakin.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Ken Ogata, Toshiyuki Nishida, Yûko Tanaka, Kanako Higuchi

Votes: 280

20. Tree Without Leaves (1986)

105 min | Drama

Haru, an aging scriptwriter, has isolated himself somewhere in the woods of Nagano to work on his first novel. As the last surviving member of his kin, he intends to chronicle the family he grew up in.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Keiju Kobayashi, Nobuko Otowa, Ichirô Zaitsu, Meiko Kaji

Votes: 965

21. The Strangling (1979)

116 min | Drama

The men who surround and torment the young protagonist (demanding teacher, owner of the company that rapes his own daughter, despotic and uncompromising father) are opposed to women (victims of men) as embodiment of salvation.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Kô Nishimura, Nobuko Otowa, Tsutomu Kariba, Akemi Negishi

Votes: 44

22. The Iron Crown (1972)

91 min | Drama

When her husband leaves her for a younger woman, a woman plots revenge against him.

Director: Kaneto Shindô | Stars: Nobuko Otowa, Hideo Kanze, Meg Flower, Taiji Tonoyama

Votes: 49

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