The Life of Oharu [Criterion Collection] [Blu-ray] [1952]

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Overview

Special Features

  • New audio commentary for the opening of the movie by film scholar Dudley Andrew
  • Mizoguchi's Art And The Demimonde, an illustrated audio essay featuring Andrew
  • The Travels of Kinoyo Tanaka, a 2009 film by Koko Kajiyama documenting the actor's 1949 goodwill tour of the United States

Synopsis

The Life of Oharu
Life of Oharu features Kinuyo Tanaka in the title role. Oharu is a middle-aged prostitute in 17th century Japan. As she prays before a statue of Buddha, Oharu reviews her past. Her road to degradation began when, as a teenager, she disgraced her family by falling in love with a samurai (Toshiro Mifune). Oharu became the mistress of a prince, who cast her off after she bore his son. She was then sold into prostitution by her father, and thus began a catch-as-catch-can existence alternating between brief happiness with those she genuinely loved and servitude to those she despised. A potential happy ending, reuniting her with her royal son, is dashed by the much-maligned Oharu herself, who opts for the life of a beggar. Directed by Kenji Mizoguchi, a lifelong advocate of equitable treatment for Japanese women, Life of Oharu was adapted from a novel by Saikaku Ibara. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Kinuyo Tanaka
    Kinuyo Tanaka - Oharu
  • Toshiro Mifune
    Toshiro Mifune - Katsunosuke
  • Image coming soon
    Ichiro Sugai - Shonzaemon, Oharu's Father
  • Daisuke Kato
    Daisuke Kato - Tasaburo Hishiya
  • Kikue Mori
    Kikue Mori - Myokai, the Old Nun
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