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Gion no shimai (1936) - movie overview

Gion no shimai (1936)

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Plot Description

Running Time
1 hour, 9 minutes

Country Japan

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Other Titles
• Gion no shimai
• Sisters of the Gion (1936)
• Gion no kyodai (1936)

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Genre: Drama, Melodrama, Urban, Society, Prostitution

Plot: Regarded by many as the best film made in pre-war Japan, THE SISTERS OF THE GION stars Isuzu Yamada as Omocha and Yoko Umemura as Umekichi, two sisters working as geishas in the Gion, the licensed red light district of Kyoto. Umekichi, the older sister, has been trying to train Omocha in the observance of "giri," which might be translated as a geisha's responsibilities. But the younger, more cynical woman deeply resents her role and wants to take her clients for as much as she can, jumping from one man to another in the process. When Umekichi takes in Furusawa (Benkei Shiganoya), a client who has gone bankrupt, Omocha vents her displeasure. Another stinging denunciation of the treatment of women in Japanese society, its visual style evinces some of elements that would come to be characteristic of director Kenji Mizoguchi: fixed and distanced camera positions, long sequence takes, and unusually fluid tracking shots.

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 Directed by
Kenji Mizoguchi
Tales of Ugetsu, Sanshô dayû, Saikaku ichidai onna
 Written by
Kenji Mizoguchi
Tales of Ugetsu, Sanshô dayû, Saikaku ichidai onna
Isuzu Yamada
Yojimbo the Bodyguard, Throne of Blood, Donzoko
Benkei Shiganoya
Zangiku monogatari
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