Sansho the Bailiff

Stranger Says:

In Kenji Mizoguchi’s 1954 masterpiece Sansho the Bailiff (set in the medieval days of warlords and human chattel), a railroaded governor’s wife and children are waylaid on their journey to join him in exile and are promptly sold into slavery, setting in motion a tragic tumble of events and injustices that rolls unpreventably downhill like a deadly avalanche. No other film so carefully interrogates the way the poison of social oppression and abuse stays in the system, and in the structure of society, over years of painful life. It’s not a film you should sit down to lightly; keep tissues, oxygen, and ice water close at hand.
by Michael Atkinson
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Trailer

Credits
Director
Kenji Mizoguchi
Cast
Kinuyo Tanaka, Yoshiaki Hanayagi, Kyoko Kagawa