The Story of the Last Chrysanthemum


New 4K Digital Restoration

Friday, March 24 | 5:30 pm

In the 1930s, the Japanese cinema experienced one of the art-form’s richest golden ages, with a period that saw extraordinary formal experimentation of a kind that has rarely been surpassed anywhere in the decades since. The pinnacle of this incredible achievement might just be Kenji Mizoguchi’s The Story of the Last Chrysanthemum, a boundlessly tragic melodrama set within the late-nineteenth-century world of Kabuki Theater. Mizoguchi’s innovative depth-staging and elegant camera movements take us backstage, into a fascinating theatrical environment rarely glimpsed on screen, while also revealing a world in which women inevitably sacrifice everything for the dreams of men. Though Mizoguchi would perfect his long-take visual style in the years following World War II, he would never again match the pure formal audacity of this newly restored 1939 masterpiece.

Director Kenji Mizoguchi 1939 Japan 143 minutes NR 4K DCP

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