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SHE AND HE

Japan, 1963 (MIFF 1965)

Director: Susumu Hari

A young couple lives on the outskirts of Tokyo in a modern apartment. She is a Manchurian refugee and an orphan, he is a businessman. Next to their building lies a wasteland of wooden shacks - a rag-pickers colony - of which the woman becomes aware for the first time when it is destroyed bv a fire. This is a world to which she, in her middle-class comfort, has scarcely given a thought. The shacks reappear almost overnight and, to the mov­ing annoyance of her husband, she gradually becomes more and more involved in the squaiters' lives, and in the affairs of one man in particular.

Although the photography and framing of Susumi Hani's She and Him are in the great Japanese tradition, the style of the film is thai of the French New Wave: a jumpy camera, highly elliptical scenario and a nervous editing technique. Hani has here been compared with Antonioni - as the Italian director's films, She and He depends very much on the leading actress, and Sachiko Hidari (director Hani's wife) admirably fills this role. The film delinitely establishes Hani as one of the most talented young Japanese directors. Festival audiences have previously seen his shorts, Children Who Draw, and Horynji Temple.

Best Actress Prize, Berlin Festival. Catholic Critics' Prize.

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