A Ball at Anjo House | Chicago Reader

A Ball at Anjo House

Kozaburo Yoshimura is a critic's darling in Japan, probably because his style alters to suit the material he's working on—he's a handyman in the French “Tradition of Quality,” with no personality of his own. This is a sub-Chekhovian exercise about the fall of an aristocratic family after the war; it makes an earnest case for pragmatism in the face of disaster, but it never achieves anything like the complexity of vision of Rules of the Game, with which it shares some themes. The cast tends toward the classical style of cinematic acting popular at the time, again modeled on the French; among the careful and obvious performances, Setsuko Hara offers her usual beauty and freshness of temperament. With Masayuki Mori and Osamu Takizawa (1947).

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