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Dragnet Girl + Shorts

Dragnet Girl
March 2, 2019 - 7:30 pm
In-person: 
benshi performers Kataoka Ichirō, Ōmori Kumiko, Sakamoto Raikō.


Blood Spattered Takadanobaba  (Japan, 1928)

Chikemuri Takadanobaba

Star Ōkōchi Denjirō and director Itō Daisuke helped remake the chambara genre in the late 1920s, infusing it with visual flash and mythic power. Sadly, thewhat films of theirs that survive, exist mostly in fragmentary form. Such is the case with Blood Spattered Takadanobaba. In this brief scene, the ronin Yasube comes home drunk to a letter from his uncle requesting assistance fighting off a band of villainous samurai. Yasube races to his uncle’s side and joins the battle already in violent progress! So that audiences can experience more directly how a benshi’s specific style can influence a film, Blood Spattered Takadanobaba will be repeated over the course of this series with a different benshi narrating each time.

Narrated by benshi Ōmori Kumiko.

Narrated by benshi Sakamoto Raikō.

Print courtesy of the National Film Archive of Japan. 35mm, b/w, silent, intertitles in Japanese with English subtitles, 7 min. Director/Screenwriter: Itō Daisuke. Cast: Ōkōchi Denjirō, Jitsukawa En'ichirō, Ichikawa Harue.


Liberty  (1929)

Escaped convicts Stan and Ollie are on the lam and up to their necks in hilarious misfortune.

Narrated by benshi Ōmori Kumiko.

35mm, b/w, silent, 22 min. Director/Screenwriter: Leo McCarey. Cast: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Tom Kennedy.

Dragnet Girl  (Japan, 1933)

Hijōsen no onna

Yasujiro Ozu brings his characteristic visual precision along on this excursion into the gritty haunts of the gangster film and the signs of an expanding modernity, a pool shall, a nightclub, a record store, a corporate office and a nightclub. A stenographer by day and gangster’s moll by night, Tokiko (Tanaka Kinuyo) fights back jealousy when Joji (Oka Joji) goes for the shop girl sister of a new, reckless member of his mob.

Narrated by benshi Kataoka Ichirō.

Print courtesy of the National Film Archive of Japan. 35mm, b/w, silent, intertitles in Japanese with English subtitles, 100 min. Director: Ozu Yasujiro. Screenwriter: Ikeda Tadao. Cast: Tanaka Kinuyo, Oka Jōji, Mizukubo Sumiko.