Wednesday, July 19, fate room THE FATE OF MADAME YUKI (1950), one of the film’s most unsung master of the melodrama in japanese, Kenji Mizoguchi.

Arrival of the train at the station of Atami, a coastal city. Down Hamako, a young first. She is about to enter the service of a notable family who works in the business. In the home where it will officer, is revealed in his eyes a couple fractured : a wife Yuki, abandoned by her husband Naoyuki, a fickle to the point of inviting home one of his lovers.

The eponymous Madame Yuki, around which crystallizes the whole tragedy home, is a secret on the first quarter of the film and his appearance in the eyes of Hamako and the spectator is given as that of a star.Games tricks, pretenses, appearances, and social crossovers class are not without evoking The Rule of the game. In is resume writing at two levels : the version of the masters of bourgeois and that of servants. The drama unfolding on the surface and the truth of the plot is revealing in the corridors, between two parts, under the language of the household. The difference here is that the marivaudage at the Renoir was defeated in its flippancy to be substituted by an asceticism which is best suited to Mizoguchi.

The music, the violin is very this gives a flavour of melodrama hollywood or Italian cinema. In a movie yet in which the scenery, gestique and the style look nothing better than a japanese drama. The posture of the performers evokes both the ukiyo-e (pictorial style of the japanese Edo era) that the gestique of the onnagata (these actors playing female characters) of the kabuki.

The plans together, often used, make manifest the theatre of the conventions and the canvas drama to the work under the skin of the story. In contrast, the lighting, playing of shadow and light, the many sequences inside and the recurrence of surcadrages plunge us into the intimacy of the couple, in the brutality of their separation. Is also claim by the corsetage, and the isolation of the characters in their social role. The recognized genius of the filmmaker is that everything in the mise en scene contributes to the most sensitive expression of love secrets of everyone.

This little melodrama, which is certainly not among the masterpieces of its author, confirms the idea of sitting in the Histories of the cinema of Mizoguchi as a feminist film-maker. To say the least, as one of the great inventors of the female figures (the tales of the moon wave after the rain, The princess Yang kwei-fei, street of shame). However, the staging, dried up by excess of asceticism, suffering from a deficiency of lyricism. The music, if present at the beginning, turns off in the end and forgets to double the story of a dramatic dimension. Caught between a generosity melodramatic and a burst of austerity, Mizoguchi gives his film an identity mâtine. If although lack the power front of Lovers crucified or dullness gross a Trip to Tokyo.

As for the food, the film being distributed with the label “high definition”, it leaves something to be desired. It remains, for example, traces of scratches on the screen – which is a shame. And, another point, black important, the crackling sound indicates that the track has not been cleaned for the needs of this new edition. But, no matter, since this is reminiscent of the original 35mm film. It is just unfortunate that the communication on the distribution of a Mizoguchi unlikely to occur under false tinsel.

Flavien Poncet

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Original title : The Fate of Madame Yuki

Achievement : Kenji Mizoguchi

Screenplay : Yoshikata Yoda

Main actors : Michiyo Kogure, Ken Uehara, Yoshiko Kuga

Release Date : 19 July 2017

Duration : 1: 29h
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