For his final film, Mizoguchi brought a lifetime of experience to bear on the heartbreaking tale of a brothel full of women in Tokyo’s Red Light District whose dreams are constantly being shattered by the socioeconomic realities surrounding them.
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I think that the scene where Yumeko meets her son outside the factory is one of the most painful moments I have ever seen on film. It is truly amazing how Mizoguchi manages to make the audience feel so much with the characters. Not many directors end their career with such a great film. Respect.
This is a deeply tragic film. These women suffer not only as the victims of unfortunate circumstances (i.e. poverty, illness, neglect), but as victims of their own unattainable dreams which are callously tossed aside by a cruelly indifferent world. With each glimmer of hope of clinging to some semblance of dignity society deals another blow. With each dissolve they plunge deeper into resignation.
after read mizoguchi's biography, somehow i thought that those women are all himself and i felt strangely connected with him and picturing his life in my head. it was surely an experience. thank you, mizoguchi-sensei.
First Mizoguchi i've watched, I thought it was fascinating mix of social drama and melodrama. The characters were interesting and their stories tragic. The burden of finincial pressure and how the women dealt differently with their situations was brilliantly told. Can't wait to watch his other movies!
Whoever called this the best film ever may well have been right in his assessment. Terrific score. Mizoguchi at his best. Good commentary by Tony Rayns on the Masters of Cinema BD also. This film enamored me, it made me put myself in the position of almost every character, reaching depth without trying hard. The radio news voiceover reminds me of some Fassbinder movies, such as Lola and The Marriage of Maria Braun.
Un excellent film social et humain du grand Mizoguchi dont ce fut hélas la dernière oeuvre. Tout en dénonçant avec âpreté et sans aucune concession le problème tragique de la prostitution, le film reste un somptueux hymne à la libération de la femme...