Top 25 films from the 1950s
Here are numbers 11 to 25 of my favourite films from the 1950s:
11. Early Summer (dir. Yasujiro Ozu, 1951)
12. Journey To Italy (dir. Roberto Rossellini, 1954)
13. Hiroshima Mon Amour (dir. Alain Resnais, 1959)
14. The 400 Blows (dir. Francois Truffaut, 1959)
15. Touch Of Evil (dir. Orson Welles, 1958)
16. The World Of Apu (dir. Satyajit Ray, 1959)
17. La Strada (dir. Federico Fellini, 1954)
18. Summer With Monika (dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1953)
19. Sunset Boulevard (dir. Billy Wilder, 1950)
20. Floating Clouds (dir. Mikio Naruse, 1955)
21. The Cranes Are Flying (dir. Mikhail Kalatozov, 1957)
22. Ashes and Diamonds (dir. Andrzej Wajda, 1958)
23. Francesco Guillare Di Dio (dir. Roberto Rossellini, 1950)
24. Vertigo (dir. Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)
25. Sansho Dayu (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1954)
Akasen Chitai (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1956) ****
Akasen Chitai (Street Of Shame), Kenji Mizoguchi’s enjoyable final film, portrays the lives of five prostitutes in a Tokyo brothel named Dreamland, shortly before the Japanese government’s introduction of an anti-prostitution bill.
Yokihi (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1955) ***
Mizoguchi’s vibrant first colour film, Yokihi (Imperial Concubine Yang/Yang Kwei Fei), recounts a Chinese legend in which a widowed Emperor falls in love with a beautiful young woman, setting into motion a tale of political intrigue.
Favourite Films: 1954
Top 5 films from 1954:
#1 Journey To Italy (dir. Roberto Rossellini)
#2 La Strada (dir. Federico Fellini)
#3 Sansho Dayu (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi)
#4 Seven Samurai (dir. Akira Kurosawa)
#5 Rear Window (dir. Alfred Hitchcock)
Some notable films from 1954 which I want to see but haven’t yet:
Senso (dir. Luchino Visconti) and The Barefoot Contessa (dir. Joseph L. Mankiewicz).
Uwasa No Onna (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1954) ****
In Kenji Mizoguchi’s Uwasa No Onna (The Woman In The Rumour), set in a Kyoto geisha house, Yukiko returns home from Tokyo after a suicide attempt and becomes involved with the same man as her mother, Matsuko.
Chikamatsu Monogatari (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1954) *****
In Kenji Mizoguchi’s hauntingly tragic, yet beautiful, Chikamatsu Monogatari (The Crucified Lovers), Osan is wrongly accused of having an affair with her husband’s employee, Mohei, with the penalty for adultery at the time being crucifixion, the pair flee and fall in love.
Sansho Dayu (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1954) *****
Set in 11th Century Japan and based on an ancient folk tale, Mizoguchi’s beautiful masterpiece follows Zushio and Anju, who, whilst travelling to see their exiled father, are kidnapped from their mother and sold into slavery, where they are forced to work for tyrannical feudal lord, Sansho the steward.
Ugetsu Monogatari (dir. Kenji Mizoguchi, 1953) *****
Kenji Mizoguchi’s splendid ghost story, Ugetsu Monogatari (Tales Of The Rain and Moon), set against the backdrop of civil war in 16th Century Japan, follows Genjuro, a potter, and his brother-in-law Tobei, who aspires to be a samurai, as they set out with their wives in search of wealth and military glory.