Kamei Fumio Retrospective [Feature Films]

A Woman’s Life

(“Onna no issho”)
- 1949 / B&W / 16mm / 101 min

Director: Kamei Fumio
Script: Mizuki Yoko, Yasumi Toshio
Based on the novel by Tokunaga Sunao’s Hitoridachi
Photography: Miyajima Yoshio
Editing: Nagasawa Yoshiki
Sound: Hosaka Tomoaki
Music: Iida Nobuo
Art Director: Abe Teruaki
Producers: Ito Takeo, Ide Toshiro
Cast: Kishi Hatae, Numazaki Isao, Shimura Takashi
Production Companies: Toho, Fujimoto Productions
Source: National Film Center

This film was to be produced right after War and Peace but was shelved when the turbulent third Toho dispute began. It was the first film to be made after the third Toho dispute, with filming resumed in November 1948. According to an agreement with the management, 15 million yen from the profits of the film were to go to the union’s strike settlement fund, so the goal was to make a hit entertainment film. In the film, a woman, a worker at a printing company, must work after marriage to send money to her family. Abused by her mother-in-law, even after becoming pregnant she could not take a day off work. The film depicts brutal anger at the unreasonable social system and at the traditional family structure. In those days, the inclusion of a bold daytime kiss scene or a shot of a naked body became a controversial issue. After this film Kamei retired from Toho and turned to independent production so that he could make pro-democracy films.

• Kamei Fumio Retrospective [Pre-War Works] Hiking Song | Shape without Shape | An Introduction to Radio: The Audience | School Broadcasting | The Geology of Fuji | Airspace [Pre-War Documentary Films] Shanghai | Peking | Fighting Soldiers | Kobayashi Issa [Post-War Documentary Films] A Japanese Tragedy | Children of the Base | The People of Sunagawa | Wheat Will Never Fall | Still It’s Good to Live | Record of Blood: Sunagawa | The World Is Terrified: The Reality of the “Ash of Death” | Living in a Rough Sea | Fluttering Pigeons | Voice of Hiroshima | Men Are All Brothers | Towards a World without Arms | All Must Live: People, Insects and Birds | All Living Things Are Friends—Lullabies of Birds, Insects and Fish [Feature Films] War and Peace | A Woman’s Life | Become a Mother, Become a Woman | Woman Walking Alone on the Earth [PR and Educational Films] Poem of Life | Invitation to Japanese Architecture | Penmanship | Quiet Construction Methods | Living with Ideas: A Profile of Sharp | Let’s Weave a Rainbow | Hong Kong, Taipei | Norihei Travel Manners | The Southern Cross Is Calling | Wishing for Tomorrow’s Happiness [Other Works] Underwear Makes the Woman | The Models and the Photographer | Kamei on Kamei: A Record of Yesterday’s Film Production Discussion Group | Human Conceit: The World of Director Kamei Fumio