7.0/10
462
7 user 8 critic

Eijanaika (1981)

Near the turbulent end of the Edo era, a man returning to Japan after exile in America searches for his wife and becomes swept up in the current of revolution in this incisive period drama from the great Shohei Imamura.

Director:

Shôhei Imamura
Reviews
6 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A down-and-out businessman travels to a seaside town, where he meets a woman with unusual sexual powers.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Kôji Yakusho, Misa Shimizu, Mitsuko Baishô
Zegen (1987)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  
Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Ken Ogata, Mitsuko Baishô, Chun Hsiung Ko
Dr. Akagi (1998)
Comedy | Drama | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

At the end of WWII, Japanese doctor Akagi searches for the cure for hepatitis in the prisoner-of-war camp.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Akira Emoto, Kumiko Asô, Jacques Gamblin
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Chronological exploits of Iwao Enokizu, a murderous thief on the run.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Ken Ogata, Rentarô Mikuni, Chôchô Miyako
The Eel (1997)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A businessman kills his adulterous wife and is sent to prison. After the release, he opens a barbershop and meets new people, talking almost to no one except an eel he befriended while in prison.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Kôji Yakusho, Misa Shimizu, Mitsuko Baishô
Action | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

A young hoodlum decides to work for a criminal organization that is tearing itself apart.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Hiroyuki Nagato, Jitsuko Yoshimura, Masao Mishima
Kuroi ame (1989)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The story of the aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing, based on Masuji Ibuse's novel.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Yoshiko Tanaka, Kazuo Kitamura, Etsuko Ichihara
Certificate: GP Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

An engineer from Tokyo arrives on a drought-ridden tropical island to drill a well to power a nearby sugar mill. He meets the inbred Futori family, hated by the locals for breaking religious customs.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Rentarô Mikuni, Chôichirô Kawarasaki, Hideko Okiyama
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

In a poor 19th century rural Japanese village, everyone who reaches the age of 70 has to climb a nearby mountain to die. An old woman is getting close to the cut-off age, and we follow her last days with her family.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Ken Ogata, Sumiko Sakamoto, Tonpei Hidari
Akai satsui (1964)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A housewife living under her tyrannical husband has her life stressfully turned upside down after getting raped by a burglar.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Masumi Harukawa, Kô Nishimura, Shigeru Tsuyuguchi
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A real gem from Imamura. A very dark crime comedy.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Hiroyuki Nagato, Misako Watanabe, Kô Nishimura
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Life story of a woman born in poverty trying to succeed. Through her many schemes, she faces her ups and downs in a cyclical nature, fueled mostly by self-interest.

Director: Shôhei Imamura
Stars: Emiko Aizawa, Setsuko Amamiya, Tomio Aoki
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Kaori Momoi ... Ine
Shigeru Izumiya Shigeru Izumiya ... Genji
Ken Ogata Ken Ogata ... Furukawa
Shigeru Tsuyuguchi Shigeru Tsuyuguchi ... Kinzo
Masao Kusakari Masao Kusakari ... Itoman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Ako Ako ... Oyoshi
Mitsuko Baishô Mitsuko Baishô ... Oko
Junzaburô Ban Junzaburô Ban ... Toramatsu
Shôhei Hino Shôhei Hino ... Magoshichi
Shino Ikenami Shino Ikenami ... Yoshino
Etsuko Ikuta Etsuko Ikuta ... Nui
Hiroshi Inuzuka Hiroshi Inuzuka ... Roku
Chôichirô Kawarasaki Chôichirô Kawarasaki ... Nakazawa
Kazuo Kitamura Kazuo Kitamura ... Koide
Nenji Kobayashi Nenji Kobayashi ... Matakichi
Edit

Storyline

Near the turbulent end of the Edo era, a man returning to Japan after exile in America searches for his wife and becomes swept up in the current of revolution in this incisive period drama from the great Shohei Imamura.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Edit

Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

8 January 1981 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Aconteceu no Fim da Era Tokugawa See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Eijanaika (1981)
2 March 2015 | by mevmijaumauSee all my reviews

EIJANAIKA (lit. "Why the hell not?", or "Oh, What the heck!") - an explosive title tying up an emotional roller-coaster of a movie. Also known under the title "Why Not?", this one-of-a-kind epic period film by Shohei Imamura lets you immediately know what you're getting into; as the first five minutes inexplicably feature a woman who can stretch her neck several meters in the air and a guy who can literally pop his eye sockets out. Imamura straight out informs you that he isn't interested in painting a traditional period film; his Eijanaika relates quite a few sub-plots and minor characters, with a dose of casual eroticism and humor.

Set during the short but turbulent time of the Edo era's downfall, the movie doesn't spend much time on the politics as it does on the equally as turbulent romance between Genji and Ine, a husband and wife whose unstable relationship is the major driving force behind the film. Unfortunately, the movie does kind of lose itself due to the overabundance of confusing sub-plot and similar side characters, which you'll often confuse, but one thing that can specifically hinder the enjoyment of a non-Japanese viewer are the inside references and various historical nuances that sort of got lost in translation. Imamura once said that he's interested in exploring the lower parts of society and lower parts of the human body in his movies; same goes for Eijanaika, where muddy, decrepit peasant shacks hide passionate outbursts between characters, while the entire Japanese society deals with the frenetic societal transition in the meantime.

One thing the movie doesn't do though is drag; there's always something new going on at every turn of the scene and it's all concluded with a huge, carnivalesque riot of people yelling a catchy "Eijanaika!" chant. This entire scene radiates with contagious positive energy and is naturally the high point of the entire film. In short, Eijanaika may be confusing to some people not accustomed to Imamura's work, and there's an abundance of side-plots, but personally I quite enjoyed it and that's what matters to me.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 7 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed