A Hen in the Wind
(Kaze no naka no mendori)
Kinuyo Tanaka, Shuji Sano, Chieko Murata, Reiko Minakami,
In this tragedy, a destitute woman, Tokiko (Kinuyo Tanaka), awaits her husband’s demobilization. When her son becomes ill, she takes the advice of a meddlesome neighbor and prostitutes herself to pay the hospital bill. Upon his return, the husband is irate; it is only when he visits a prostitute himself that he begins to understand what his wife has gone through. Yasujiro Ozu evinces an almost Mizoguchean focus on the oppressed woman before taking up the context that would become his treasured domain: the deterioration of the Japanese family, and the resilience of its individual members, under the onslaught of modern life.