Directed by Mikio Naruse
After Floating Clouds, now the 2nd film I’ve seen by Naruse. The fact that his films have such limited availability is horrific. The only Region 1 DVD available of his work is the release if this film by Criterion Collection, you can buy that here. But there are some good news, the wonderful Eclipse Series is releasing his five surviving silent films, preorder it (release date March 22nd) here, can’t wait until it is released.
MUBI list for Naruse here
Phillip Lopate writes on the film for Criterion, article here
“No one is that good—or that evil—in a Naruse movie; he neither ennobles nor demeans, but shows realistically the ways that we are all mixed, contradictory creatures.”
Short introductory article from Senses of Cinema here, mentioning When A Woman Ascends the Stairs and Late Chrysanthemums.
“Naruse does not search for sympathy through his dispassionate and unsentimental gaze, but rather, seeks validation for the human struggle through emotional honesty and perseverance.”