Mizoguchi is never subtle in his films. His films would work better in black and white even if color was the norm in Japan. In this film the great Kinuyo Tanaka, who has starred in other Mizoguchi films, is Fusako, a war widow who also buried a son who has to become a prostitute to live. Her sister Naksuko, played by Sanae Takasuga and their sister in law Kumiko (Tomie Tsunoda) also become ones also. Osaka is depicted as being full of prostitutes, and that could have very well been accurate at the time. Mizoguchi, fascinated in many of his films with the downtrodden, does his usual superior job but the film really is essential due to the acting of Kinuyo Tanaka and Sanae Takasuga. They bring a realistic, grim situation to live. Of course, this film is not a happy one, but if you can take that, this is another near masterpiece of Kenji Mizoguchi.
Women of the Night
Women of the Night
In the post-war Japan, Fusako Owada lives in the home of her mother-in-law with her baby that is ill while waits for the return of her husband from the war. When she learns that her husband has died and her baby also dies, she moves to another city with her neighbor Kumiko Owada to work as secretary executive for the opium dealer Kenzô Kuriyama. One day, she stumbles upon her missed sister Natsuko Kimijima that has returned from the Korea on the street and she learns that Natsuko works as a dancer in a night-club. Natsuko moves to Fusako and Kumiko's apartment and soon she has a love affair with Fusako's boss. However Fusako is secretly Kuriyama's mistress and upset, she vanishes. One day, a client of Natsuko in the night-club tells to her that he saw Fusako in the Red Light District. Natsuko that is pregnant decides to seek her sister out in the prostitution area. Will she find Fusako?
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November 21, 2020 at 12:16 AM