『Tokijiro of KutsukakeLoan Yakuza』
Cast：Kinnosuke Nakamura, Junko Ikeuchi, Kiyoshi Atsumi, Chiyonosuke Azuma
Tokijiro takes the wife Okinu and child of a man he killed, back to the hometown Kutsukake, in return for their hospitality. Knowing the foolishness of the ways of a yakuza gambler, he grabs his knife again and jumps into action, to help Okinu who is dying from a heavy illness. Kinnosuke Nakamura and Junko Ikeuchi depicts Shin Hasegawa’s love story of a wandering gambler.
Sadao Yamane and Koushi Ueno help to pull up Tai Kato’s popularity which raises from the late 1960’s, but this film was what caught the audience and critics’ attention the most. Traveller Tokijiro and widow Okinu with her child, are on a dangerous journey where the two hold emotions that go against the duties of a gambler. The potential drama that they bear, threaten the audience at every corner of the journey. Both Kinnosuke Nakamura and Junko Ikeuchi, at the peak of their career, easily portray delight and anger. Snow that falls into darkness, the split road that the reunited two are lead upon... This domestic story was highly appraised at the 1998 Locarno Film Festival. A masterpiece of the history of world cinema that shows the universality of action films.
Absorbed by silent films such as the Daisuke Ito films, he enters the film industry with the help of his uncle, Sadao Yamanaka. He makes his debut as director in 1951, mainly directing period and yakuza films with Toei. After the 60’s, with his experiences in major films of many genres and productions, he builds his reputation with the fixed, low-angle, long-take shots, and action films reminding of the energetic films of the past. His affectionate and wrathful narrative that portrays the passionate lives of men and women who live outside social expectations, and his directing skills fully using the depth of a wide screen to vividly show the characters, are outstanding in the world’s history of cinema. The 1998 Locarno International Film Festival’s retrospective surprised many cinephiles. This will be a significant screening to see how the world interprets his talent, that portrayed domestic stories as universal action films.