Suzaki Paradise: Red Light District (1956)

Yûzô Kawashima directs Michiyo Aratama, Tatsuya Mihashi and Yukiko Todoroki in this Japanese drama where an unemployed couple drift to the outskirts and temptations of a city’s prostitution area.

A really engaging, unjudgmental drama. You get a better idea of post-war Japan city life from this hard-edged soap. The best moments are when the characters are just going about their day serving sake or noodles and wandering the streets looking for each other. Unlike Ken Loach or The Dardennes, Kawashima doesn’t paint poverty as an impossible trap but does capture the desperation and pressure such limited options put on relationships and the soul. Earthy, solid.


Check out my wife Natalie’s Horror blog

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here

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