By Catherine Russell
Probably the most prolific and revered administrators of eastern cinema, Naruse Mikio (1905–69) made eighty-nine movies among 1930 and 1967. Little, even though, has been written approximately Naruse in English, and masses of the writing approximately him in jap has no longer been translated into English. With The Cinema of Naruse Mikio, Catherine Russell brings deserved severe awareness to this under-appreciated director. along with illuminating Naruse’s contributions to eastern and global cinema, Russell’s in-depth examine of the director sheds new mild at the eastern movie among the Nineteen Thirties and the 1960s.
Naruse was once a studio-based director, an organization guy popular for bringing movies in on finances and on time. in the course of his lengthy occupation, he directed videos in several kinds of melodrama whereas showing a notable continuity of tone. His movies have been in response to various jap literary assets and unique scripts; just about all of them have been set in modern Japan. Many have been “women’s films.” that they had lady protagonists, they usually depicted women’s passions, disappointments, exercises, and residing stipulations. whereas neither Naruse or his audiences pointed out themselves as “feminist,” his movies time and again foreground, if no longer problem, the inflexible gender norms of eastern society. Given the advanced historic and significant concerns surrounding Naruse’s cinema, a finished learn of the director calls for an leading edge and interdisciplinary procedure. Russell attracts at the severe reception of Naruse in Japan as well as the cultural theories of Harry Harootunian, Miriam Hansen, and Walter Benjamin. She indicates that Naruse’s video clips have been key texts of eastern modernity, either within the ways in which they portrayed the altering roles of eastern girls within the public sphere and of their depiction of an city, industrialized, mass-media-saturated society.
About The Author(s)
Catherine Russell is Professor of movie stories at Concordia collage. She is the writer of Experimental Ethnography: The paintings of movie within the Age of Video, additionally released by way of Duke college Press, and Narrative Mortality: loss of life, Closure, and New Wave Cinemas.
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Additional info for The Cinema of Naruse Mikio: Women and Japanese Modernity
The Silent Screen, 1894–1927 15 a Westinghouse factory from an overhead industrial crane that sweeps over the floor, stressing the vastness of that industrial space not by showing the entire location at once in long shot, but by allowing the space to unfold sequentially before our eyes. The same year, Bitzer photographed one of the most astonishing films of this period, Interior New York Subway, 14th Street to 42nd Street (1904). The effort involves the coordination of three different trains: the train that is the subject of the film, another train (following the first) to hold the camera, and a third train (running parallel to the first) to house the electric lighting necessary to illuminate the subject as it travels through the darkened tunnels.
23 The resulting construction boom in the Los Angeles area produced a mixture of daylight and electric studios. 25 Daylight’s natural advantages declined in importance as electric lights grew more powerful, and as the increasing role of analytical editing made staging in depth a less popular option. By 1918, studios were painting over their glass roofs, committing fully to the artificial light aesthetic. ”26 Though many filmmakers had been relying on a hybrid system for years, artificial lighting was becoming the symbol of a mature, technologically advanced industry, and studios were competing with each other to invest in electricity more heavily.
Initially, the editing pattern is a version of Griffith’s trademark cross-cutting, and we follow two simultaneous lines of action in two distinct spaces, but soon the two spaces converge, as the train catches up with the handcar and the villains make a brief, failed effort to escape. The last shot of the film offers a clever variation of the shots we have just seen. As the romantic couple sits on the front of the train, the train starts to move backward, away from the camera. At first glance, the shot appears to be a dolly, with the train static and the camera in motion.
The Cinema of Naruse Mikio: Women and Japanese Modernity by Catherine Russell