The Life of Oharu (1952)

Not Rated   |    |  Drama


The Life of Oharu (1952) Poster

Follows a woman's fight and survival amid the vicissitudes of life and the cruelty of the society.


8.2/10
5,332

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  • Toshirô Mifune and Kinuyo Tanaka in The Life of Oharu (1952)
  • Kinuyo Tanaka in The Life of Oharu (1952)
  • Toshirô Mifune and Kinuyo Tanaka in The Life of Oharu (1952)
  • Kinuyo Tanaka in The Life of Oharu (1952)
  • Kinuyo Tanaka in The Life of Oharu (1952)
  • The Life of Oharu (1952)

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24 December 2011 | CountZero313
9
| dignity in disgrace
Mizoguchi's empathy for female characters is legendary. The Life of Oharu is one outstanding example. One woman's journey from member of the imperial court to elderly streetwalker is narrated in exquisite, shimmering, painful style. Oharu (Kinuyo Tanaka) is seduced by a man below her station. Her crime is to love the man back unreservedly. That action becomes the catalyst for a series of degradations punctuated by false dawns, as Oharu's life spirals to rock bottom. And as bleak and depressing as that sounds, Mizoguchi's storytelling, combined with Tanaka's dignified portrayal, make this film cathartic, a tragedy with a small, life-affirming message at its heart. It is a cautionary tale to the follies of social mores, and the burden that women through the ages have to endure. More than that, it is a tale of one woman's dignity through the most humiliating of circumstances. Stunning.

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Drama

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