Tag Archives: japanese

Kanikôsen (2009) SABU, Ryûhei Matsuda, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Kengo Kôra

Kanikosen (2009)
On board at the boat Kanikosen, where fish and crabs preserves, forced workers to work under miserable conditions, with minimum wages. Some can not cope with conditions and even death from malnutrition, and is also the supervisor of the more vicious variety. Shinjo, one of the employees, trying to convince the others that they will get good luck and fortune in his next life, and persuades them because they commit suicide to get there faster. It ends, however, in a single major failure. Rather than flee Shinjo being picked up by a Russian ship. Once there, he is overwhelmed by the social conditions that are completely different from those he has just left and decided therefore to return to Kanikosen to save their employees.
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Koibumi / Love Letter (1953) Kinuyo Tanaka

Koibumi (1953)
This valiant melodrama is the brilliant debut as a moviemaker of the great Japanese actress Kinuyo Tanaka, who also has a small role in the story. Based on a screenplay by Keinosuke Kinoshita, “Koibumi” explore the wounds of war, the limits of love and the need to forgive. A sad and troubled man, Reikichi Mayumi (Masayuki Mori), finds a new job five years after the end of WWII. He will write love letters for other people, which was not uncommon in post-war times (remember the starving poet Lope Veiga -Fernando Rey- in Spanish masterpiece “Cielo negro”). His ideas about love and his personal principles will be tested when he reconnects with his former girlfriend, Michiko (Yoshigo Kuga), a woman with a dark past marked by war and the further occupation of her country by the US military forces.
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Maria no Oyuki / Oyuki, the Virgin (1935) Kenji Mizoguchi

Maria no Oyuki (1935)
Oyuki, the Virgin is based on Kawaguchi Matsutaro’s adaptation of Maupassant’s “Boule de Suif” (“Lump of Fat,” also the inspiration for Ford’s Stagecoach). To this story Mizoguchi added some of his own elements. Maupassant’s original work, set during the Franco-Prussian War, is the story of a group of people who try to flee the battleground in a horsedrawn carriage. The bourgeois use the expression “lump of fat” to refer sarcastically to the prostitute who is riding along with them. When they are caught by the enemy, they offer to send her to the commander as a human sacrifice. This done, when they leave the battlefield the next day, all they do is censure her and call her vulgar.
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Hachi no su no kodomotachi / Children of the Beehive (1948) Hiroshi Shimizu

Hachi no su no kodomotachi (1948)
The movie focuses on the plight of ten war orphans hailing from different cities across Japan. With nowhere to go, they scavenge around train stations, scratching out an existence by means of black market work for a one-legged tramp whilst avoiding being picked up by the police for vagrancy. Soon however, they find a more inspiring role model in the figure of a nameless soldier just repatriated after the war. An orphan himself, the soldier also has no home to return to, and so sets out across the country with the kids in tow in search of work before settling on the goal of leading them to the orphanage where he himself grew up.
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Insutanto numa / Instant Swamp (2009) Satoshi Miki, Kumiko Asô, Morio Kazama, Ryô Kase, Comedy

Insutanto numa (2009)
After being forced to resign from her publishing company job when her magazine goes out of circulation, office worker Haname Jinchoge (Kumiko Aso) is given the name of her real father-Noburo Jinchoge when her mother (Keiko Matsuzaka) falls into a coma after nearly drowning in a pond while searching for kappa. Unsure if Noburo (Morio Kazama) is her father, Haname decides to visit him but tells him that she is a distant relative, he happens to be the shopkeeper at an odd antiquities shop called Light Bulb Co., working for her father is a punk rocker named Gas (Ryo Kase).
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