A Japanese Tragedy(“Nihon no higeki”)
1946 / B&W / 16mm / 39 min
Editing: Kamei Fumio, Yoshimi Yutaka
Sound: Toa Hassei
Producer: Iwasaki Akira
Production Company: Nippon Eigasha
Source: Nippon Eiga Shinsha
Using mostly footage from Nippon News newsreels, this film explains the history of Japanese aggression, from the Manchurian Incident to the Pacific War. The governing classes of Japanese capitalism planned and carried out the war project to acquire foreign markets. and while most people were forced into poverty, the capitalists became rich. The special political police detained Communists and those who opposed the war. With the rise of fascism, Japan’s tragedy begins. The film is famous for the symbolic shot in which an image of the Emperor in full military dress is overlapped with one of the Emperor in civilian clothes. Yoshida Shigeru, the prime minister at the time, was furious after seeing the film and approached the GHQ to have the film banned and confiscated. The title “Nippon Eigasha Movie Commentary on the Times: The Voice of Freedom” appear in the opening credits.