Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Sansho The Bailiff - Close Reading


Kenji Mizoguchi (16 May 1898 – 04 August 1956) is a prominent old master of Japanese cinema amidst other great names such as Yasujiro Ozu and Akira Kurosawa. 1954's "Sansho The Bailiff" is indisputably one of his finest works that has gathered awards at the Venice Film Festival.


“Sansho The Bailiff” is a bitter tale of how a family attempts to negotiate a world of cruelty and brutality that seems to be totally void of humanity. The film opens with a prologue with a text phrase as follows:

This story is set during the late Heian period,
an era when mankind had not yet awakened as human beings

For this film, I've selected two key scenes and performed an indepth close reading analysis of them.

Anju's Self-Sacrifice

Zushio Reunites With His Mother

Hope you'll enjoy this article, especially for those of you who've watched the classic.


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