Daily Archives: January 13, 2006

Scattered Clouds

A young woman (Yoko Tsukasa) whose husband is killed in an accident returns to her hometown, where she keeps encountering the guilt-stricken young executive (Yuzo Kayama) who drove the car that ran over her husband. Against all odds, they fall in love. Mikio Naruse’s characteristically fatalistic last feature (1967)in color and ‘Scope and at times evocative of Douglas Sirkis too melodramatic and formulaic to be one of his best films, but Tsukasa, who also worked for Kurosawa (Yojimbo) and Ozu (Late Autumn), is wonderfully expressive. It’s a pity Kayama, effective in a parallel role in Naruse’s 1964 Yearning, can’t quite keep up with her. In Japanese with subtitles. 107 min. (JR)… Read more »

Sound Of The Mountain

Made during his richest period, Mikio Naruse’s 1954 adaptation of a novel by Nobel Prize winner Yasunari Kawabata about the bonds between a lonely wife (the great Setsuko Hara), her brazenly philandering husband, and her brooding, sympathetic father-in-law (So Yamamura) was one of the director’s favorites. Characteristically, the poetry of the mise en scene and the economy of the editing are terse and unsentimental, with Naruse’s sense of life’s perpetual disappointments firmly in place. In Japanese with subtitles. 94 min. (JR)… Read more »

Underwater!

John Sturges directed this routine skin-diving thriller (1955, 99 min.) about searching for sunken treasure. It was filmed in ‘Scope, so beware of scanned TV prints eliminating body parts belonging to Jane Russell, Gilbert Roland, Richard Egan, Lori Nelson, and even Jayne Mansfield, the main sources of attraction. (JR)… Read more »