In Akira Kurosawa’s first film after the end of World War II, future beloved Ozu regular Setsuko Hara gives an astonishing performance as Yukie, who transforms herself from genteel bourgeois daughter to independent social activist during a tumultuous decade in Japanese history.
This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what's now showing
Setsuko Hara carries this film amazingly well and yet Kurosawa still found a way to make it about how important a man was lmao, but that arguably plays a smaller part in Yukie's greater self-realization.
Un splendide portrait de femme, incarnée par une remarquable actrice nippone, connue pour ses rôles et ses compositions principalement dans les dernières œuvres du grand metteur en scène Yasujiro Ozu. Pour cette réalisation quelque peu oubliée ou méconnue dans la filmographie d'Akira Kurosawa, on est en présence d'un film éminemment politique qui mérite une rapide et nécessaire réhabilitation... www.cinefiches.com
the blurb i read about this described her as an "independent social activist" so the first 2 acts i was just waiting for her to go full out emma goldman.. but the final act and the sequences at the rice fields in particular turned out some of the most incredible and unique moments i've witnessed in cinema
It's astonishing that this got made so soon after WWII, but oddly even given its strongly pacifist sentiments this still feels like state-sanctioned cinema. It seems a little stilted for Kurosawa, with the first hour suffering from lack of music cues and poor editing, and while the second half fares better technically, it feels remarkably close to the heroics-in-suffering of 'Mother India'.