清作の妻 (Seisaku no tsuma)
Friday, April 2, 2010
1965, 93 min., 35 mm, B&W, in Japanese with English subtitles. Directed by Yasuzo Masumura. With Ayako Wakao, Takahiro Tamura, Nobuo Chiba. Print courtesy of The Japan Foundation with permission from Kadokawa Pictures, Inc.
On the eve of the Russo-Japanese war at the beginning of the 20th century, small-town girl Okane has married an old wealthy man to escape a life of poverty. Upon her husband’s sudden death, she withdraws to her small farming village where she stoically submits to public opprobrium and lives the silent sullen life of a pariah. Along comes Seisaku (Takahiro Tamura), the local “model youth”, returning from his army duty: while she is the shame of the village, he is the pride of his community. Nevertheless, the disreputable beauty and the honorable patriot begin an unlikely and tumultuous love affair that will eventually render him as marginal as she.
In this film, Masumura's fetish actress Ayako Wakao delivers one of her best performances ever: she won both the Kinema Jumpo Awards (the Japanese Oscars) and the Blue Ribbon Awards prize for Best actress for this role.
Part of the Globus Film Series:
Mad, Bad.... & Dangerous to Know: Three Untamed Beauties
$11/$7 members, students & seniors
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