Sansho the Bailiff  

A film of unparalleled beauty by the great Japanese Master Kenji Mizoguchi

Sansho the Bailiff (1954)

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Sansho the Bailiff Movie Overview

In medieval Japan a compassionate governor is sent into exile. His wife and children try to join him, but are separated, and the children grow up amid suffering and oppression.

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi

Release Date: 1954-03-31
Status: Released
Run time: 124 min / 2:4
Production Company : Daiei Motion Picture Co., Ltd.
Production Country: Japan
Release Date: 1954-03-31
Status: Released
Run time: 124 min / 2:4

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Kinuyo Tanaka
as Tamaki
Yoshiaki Hanayagi
as Zushiô
Kyôko Kagawa
as Anju
Eitarô Shindô
as Sanshô dayû
Akitake Kôno
as Taro
Masao Shimizu
as Masauji Taira
Ken Mitsuda
as Prime Minister Fujiwara
Kazukimi Okuni
as Norimura
Yôko Kozono
as Kohagi
Noriko Tachibana
as Namiji
Ichirô Sugai
as Minister of Justice
Teruko Omi
as Nakagimi
Chieko Naniwa
as Ubatake
Kikue Môri
as Priestess
Ryôsuke Kagawa
as Ritsushi Kumotake
Kanji Koshiba
as Kaikudo Naito
Shinobu Araki
as Sadaya
Reiko Kongo
as Shiono
Shôzô Nanbu
as Masasue Taira
Ryônosuke Azuma
as Landlord
Sumao Ishihara
as Yakko
Yukio Horikita
as Jiro
Jun Fujikawa
as Kanamaru
Soji Shibata
as Sado man
Akira Shimizu
as Slave Trader
Midori Komatsu
as Harbour's lady
Tokio Oki
as Harbour's man
Akira Shiga
as Farmer #2
Saburo Date
as Kimpei


Directing Kenji Mizoguchi Director
Writing Ogai Mori Story
Writing Fuji Yahiro Writer
Writing Yoshikata Yoda Writer
Production Masaichi Nagata Producer
Sound Fumio Hayasaka Original Music Composer
Sound Tamekichi Mochizuki Original Music Composer
Sound Kanahichi Odera Original Music Composer
Editing Mitsuzô Miyata Editor
Art Hisakazu Tsuji Production Design
Art Kisaku Ito Art Direction
Directing Tokuzô Tanaka Assistant Director
Art Akira Naitô Assistant Art Director
Lighting Kenichi Okamoto Gaffer
Camera Shôzô Tanaka Camera Operator
Camera Kazuo Miyagawa Director of Photography
Costume & Make-Up Shima Yoshizane Costume Design
Sound Iwao Ôtani Sound Designer

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  • I had heard about "Sansho the Bailiff" for years and I must say that I was not prepared for what I saw when I watched it today. This is a masterfully told story that leaves us wishing that the story had a different ending.

  • A peerless chronicler of the soul who specialized in supremely emotional, visually exquisite films about the circumstances of women in Japanese society throughout its history, Kenji Mizoguchi (Ugetsu) had already been directing movies for decades when he made THE LIFE OF OHARU in 1952.

  • Ugetsu, Tales of Ugetsu or Ugetsu Monogatari (雨月物語) is a 1953 Japanese romantic fantasy drama film directed by Kenji Mizoguchi and based on stories in Ueda Akinari's book of the same name.It is a ghost story and an example of the jidaigeki (period drama) genre, starring Masayuki Mori and Machiko Kyō.. Drawing its plot particularly from Ueda's tales "The House in the Thicket" and "The ...

  • Kobayashi’s two most important and enduring collaborators, the actor Tatsuya Nakadai and the composer Tōru Takemitsu, contributed greatly to these paradoxical effects.

  • Lieutenant-General Mori Rintaro (森林太郎, February 17, 1862 – July 8, 1922), known by his pen name Mori Ōgai (森鴎外), was a Japanese Army Surgeon general officer, translator, novelist, poet and father of famed author Mari Mori.He obtained his medical license at a very young age and introduced translated German literary works to the Japanese public.

  • The great Japanese director Kenji Mizoguchi draws on sources from both East and West for this, his crowning achievement. Focusing on an ambitious potter haunted by a beautiful ghost and a farmer who dreams of becoming a samurai, Ugetsu offers a commentary on the delusions of lust and power and the folly of war. Renowned cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa helps Mizoguchi seamlessly interweave the ...

  • Critics Consensus: With its thought-provoking themes, rich atmosphere, and brilliant direction, Kenji Mizoguchi's Ugetsu monogatari is a towering classic of world cinema.

  • Along with Osaka Elegy (1936), Sisters of the Gion is widely considered one of Kenji Mizoguchi's finest prewar films. The movie takes a realistic look at the life of a geisha in Kyoto's Gion district.

  • The mother of a feudal lord's only heir is kidnapped away from her husband by the lord. The husband and his samurai father must decide whether to accept the unjust decision, or risk death to get her back.

  • Follows the lives of the Borgen family, as they deal with inner conflict, as well as religious conflict with each other, and the rest of the town.