Today, we mostly know the great Japanese star Kinuyo Tanaka for her ability to disappear into roles in such films as The Life of Oharu, Ugetsu, and The Ballad of Narayama. But in the late 1940s, she was a personality offscreen as well, serving as Japan’s first postwar goodwill ambassador to the United States. In October 1949, she embarked on a three-month tour of Hawaii, California, and points east. This journey is documented in Koko Kajiyama’s 2009 film The Travels of Kinuyo Tanaka, a film bursting with rare footage and available on our release of The Life of Oharu. In the following clip, we see film and photos from the Hollywood leg of Tanaka’s trip, including visits with some major American stars.
Career Women in the Land of Lubitsch
Critics Molly Haskell and Farran Smith Nehme talk about the highly idiosyncratic heroines who populate Ernst Lubitsch’s comedies, including the protagonist of his final film, Cluny Brown.
Ritwik Ghatak’s Pursuit of Truth Beyond Realism
Acclaimed Indian filmmakers Saeed Akhtar Mirza and Kumar Shahani discuss how the Bengali master mixed expressionism and naturalism in his devastating domestic tragedy The Cloud-Capped Star.
A Howl of Defiance from the Italian Sixties
Marco Bellocchio’s subversive debut feature, Fists in the Pocket, emerged out of a period of social unrest, taking aim at both bourgeois values and Catholic hypocrisy.