Tag Archives: Tomu Uchida

Tomu Uchida – Tasogare sakaba AKA Twilight Saloon (1955)

In Twilight Saloon a cast of diverse characters spend an eventful evening in a cheap beer hall filled with music, dance, drunkenness, and self-reflection. Witty and lively, it also has a confessional quality: Uchida cast his regular prewar star Isamu Kosugi as an artist lamenting his art’s use for propagandistic purposes during the war…. Read More »

Tomu Uchida – Koiya koi nasuna koi AKA The Mad Fox (1962)

At once reserved and utterly unhinged, Tomu Uchida’s The Mad Fox has garnered praise for its fervent theatricality and haywire visuals. But the very structure of the thing possesses a lopsided attractiveness as well and not only due to a twisty narrative that does justice to its alternative title, Love, Thy Name Be Sorrow (although a review claims it’s roughly translated as Love, Love, Don’t Play With Love). The first 25 or so minutes were taken up with what my friend Bill called cabinet meetings, some sort of medieval court power play that reminded me of the overnarrativization of The Phantom Menace (or, better, its laser-pointed parody in a hilarious episode of The Simpsons). Read More »

Tomu Uchida – Yôtô monogatari: hana no Yoshiwara hyakunin-giri AKA Hero of the Red Light District AKA Killing in Yoshiwara (1960)

On the surface, this may seem to be an early example of the Japanese exploitation films that would become very popular about five years later. In fact, this film occasionally feels like Seijun Suzuki’s own interpretation, if only for the technicolor cinematography and the presence of some sleazy elements. However, past the surface, this is still very much a Tomu Uchida film. His compassion towards his character and the issues they face, is handled delicately and his semi-cynical humor is as apparent as ever. Still, I’d be lying if I said this was on the same level as Uchida’s own Bloody Spear on Mount Fuji. Read More »