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Pale Flower


Action / Crime

Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN

Top cast

720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
882.5 MB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 36 min
P/S ...
1.6 GB
Japanese 2.0
23.976 fps
1 hr 36 min
P/S 0 / 4

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by MartinHafer8 / 10

An allegory for the supposed ennui and purposeless of post-war Japan.

According to information I've read, the writer of the story that became "Kawaita hana", Shintarô Ishihara, is an ardent nationalist who was upset to see how Japan changed following WWII. His story reflects some of his politics and his worry that the new Japan was losing its collective soul. To really understand this, it would sure help to have a Japanese history professor on hand to point out the symbolism (such as the murder at the end of the film which was meant to copy a real life televised killing of a Japanese politician). I was aware of some of this...but am not exactly a student of Japanese history and culture. However, if you can find a copy of this film with a commentary track (something missing when you watch this on the Criterion channel instead of on their DVD),try it.

The story centers on an old school Yakuza member, Muraki, who was just released from prison following the senseless murder of a member of another clan. Soon after re-entering society, he finds himself infatuated with a really screwed up rich lady who apparently is slumming it. Saeko shows many of the traits of a Borderline Personality...self-destructive behavior, various addictions and a need for excitement. In contrast, Muraki is much more stable and, at times, rather quiet and dull. And, through the course of the story, Muraki mostly seems like a distant man watching the world around him....until the ending, where he suddenly and viciously acts. What exactly will happen with Muraki and Saeko? See the film.

This film might be tough for some viewers, as although it's a film about organized crime, it's NOT all about action and murder. Much of the film seems slow and mundane even. This is NOT a complaint...more a commentary about the Yakuza and society as a whole. A most unusual film...and one that you find yourself immersed in even if the pace is slow and very deliberate. Worth seeing...especially for the inventive camera angles and framing of many of the shots.

Reviewed by gavin69427 / 10

Gangster With a Woman's Influence

A gangster (Ryo Ikebe) gets released from prison and has to cope with the recent shifts of power between the gangs, while taking care of a thrill-seeking young woman (Mariko Kaga),who got in bad company while gambling.

Director Shinoda was influenced by Charles Baudelaire's poetry collection "Les Fleurs du mal" while making the film, an unusual source of input for a film. Shinoda chose the subject of yakuza as he felt the yakuza world is the only place where a Japanese ceremonial structure is sustained.

Recently (the first half of 2016) I have seen several Japanese gangster films thanks to Arrow Video and their release of "Gangster VIP" and various other Nikkatsu treasures. This film, from Criterion, is different. A bit darker, perhaps. But most interestingly, it has a very active role for a young woman, being not just a love interest but actually driving the plot. That strikes me as being uncommon, maybe even rare.

Reviewed by boblipton9 / 10

They Live By Night

This movie reminded me of August Le Breton; not that I've read any of his books, but I have seen RIFIFI and DU RIFIFI A PANAME, movies from his writings, of crooks fallen behind the times, who believe that there is honor among thieves, only to learn to their sorrow there isn't.

Ryô Ikebe has just been released from prison. He returns to a gang in a struggle to maintain its territory. He does his duty by his gang, but the only thing he cares about is the illegal gambling dens, one of the 'Pale Flowers' of the movie -- apparently the movie was held back because director Masahiro Shinoda shot the gambling sequences accurately in the midst of a government crackdown on the dens. The other pale flower is Mariko Kaga, a blank-faced beauty, likewise addicted to gambling, who only shows wild emotions in the aftermath. She's a compelling anomaly. In a Japan where the women exist solely for men's pleasure and for birthing their heirs, she seems to exist outside normal and Yakuza rules. As Ikebe falls under her succubine influence, he finds his rival is the lowering Takashi Fujiki, a psychotic dope fiend.

It's a film noir, demi-monde Pandemonium these two live in; the daytime shots on the streets of Tokyo are stolen and look washed out, reflecting where these people live; there's even a clock near the beginning, even though the Dutch Angles are missing. Instead we have people trying to fill time, at the racetrack, at cards, trying to distract them from the existential boredom with their lives, the yearning for the normal world of Japanese society they cannot enter. In the end, Ikebe knows, his role is to kill for his gang and go to prison, which is a limbo for him. What torments him is that he is neither good nor bad, so he must cycle endlessly between Limbo and the Abyss.

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