Mikio Naruse

Mikio Naruse – Arakure aka Untamed (1957)

A woman marries, gives birth to a stillborn child, and divorces, falls in love with a hotel-keeper, only to find herself subordinated to his drive for success, takes up with a tailor who cannot console himself with her strong personality. Read More »

Mikio Naruse – Hourou-ki aka Her Lonely Lane (1962)

A dramatized biography of Fumiko Hayashi, the noted Japanese writer. Born to improverished parents Fumiko does all she can to earn money enough to support herself. Along the way she gets invovled with various men, good and bad. Read More »

Mikio Naruse – Onna no za AKA A Woman’s Place (1962)

A Women’s Place follows the daily lives of the Ishikawa family who own a general goods store in Tokyo. The film’s opening sees the Ishikawa children rush to the bedside of their father after hearing that he collapsed. As all is well, they go on with their hurried lives. A mystery son later appears out of nowhere to upend the family order and stability. Read More »

Yûzô Kawashima & Mikio Naruse – Yoru no nagare AKA Evening Stream (1960)

A woman and her daughter are in love with the same man, a chef at the restaurant that the mother manages. He is slightly crippled from frostbite in his years in Siberian labor camps and considers himself “already dead.” Read More »

Mikio Naruse – Maihime AKA Dancing Girl (1951)

Mariko Okada (in her film debut) plays a young ballerina prodigy whose parents seem to be trapped in a loveless marriage. The mother has been seeing a family friend for 20 years, but it’s obvious that they feel more than just friendship for each other, causing suspicion and unease with her son. The father throws himself into work, until one day, it all boils over… naruse-style. Read More »

Mikio Naruse – Hikinige aka Hit and Run (1966)

In 1966, Mikio Naruse made two films that featured elements of the suspense/thriller genre. According to IMDb, The Stranger Within a Woman came first in January. Then in April, this film was released

Here’s Michael Kerpan’s review of the film:
In Naruse’s next to last film, he returned to cinemascope format, but stayed with black and white film. This is once again, in terms of plot, a bit of a shocker. Soon after we meet Kuniko (a young widow, played by Hideko Takamine) and her much-beloved young only son, the boy is run over by Kinuko (played by Yoko Tsukasa the rich spoiled wife of an automobile executive). Kinuko, it turns out, was distracted at the time of the accident because her companion in the car, a hunkish younger man who is her lover, had just told her of his plan to soon begin a far-away job. Kinuko tells her husband of the accident (but not the precipitating cause), and he orders the corporate chauffeur (Yutaka Sada, who was also the unfortunate chauffeur in “High and Low”). Luckily for him, he gets off with a small fine and a suspended sentence. Read More »

Mikio Naruse – Haru no mezame AKA Spring Awakens (1947)

“Haru no mezame” was Naruse’s third full-lenth post-war film — and a delightful surprise. It turns out to be a slice of life film, centered around a couple of years in the life of a rural high school girl — played by 16 year old Yoshiko Kuga (future star in Portrait of Madame Yuki, Banka, Equinox Flower, Good Morning) — still a tiny bit plumpish — and not full grown. Almost no plot to speak of — just normal events of school and home life and hanging around with friends. Read More »