Her Lonely Lane

Naruse's adaptation of writer Fumiko Hayashi's autobiography begins with a fury that predicts Imamura and Suzuki: a young girl stands defiantly in an empty street, eyes glaring directly at the camera, then runs away screaming that the police have arrested her father. From there it's a trip down the gutters of Japan, as young Fumiko slugs her way through a succession of bad jobs and worse men; slowly making her way from menial labor to artistic success, she finds the jobs slightly better, but the men the same. Naruse felt an obvious bond with Hayashi (he based sixteen films on her work), and it's never clearer than in this “final, beautiful tribute to her” (Phillip Lopate). A love letter from one artist to another, Her Lonely Lane celebrates a woman who created art from turmoil, and, when faced with jealous lovers, found greater success in solitude.

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