The Eighteen Who Stirred Up a Storm
(Arashi o yubu juhachinin)

Screening on Film
Directed by Kiju Yoshida.
With Tamotsu Hayakawa, Yoshiko Kayama, Eiji Matsui.
Japan, 1963, 35mm, black & white, 108 min.
Japanese with English subtitles.
Print source: The Japan Foundation

The last of Yoshida's taiyozoku films focuses on a gang of proletariat ruffians enraged with a world that offers them no means to advance except though violence. Pitted against the destructive gang is an idealistic youth determined to stop them from wrecking his town—and to protect the young waitress he has come to love. Exemplary of the Shochiku New Wave is the film's use of stark black and white widescreen cinematography as a means to deliberately aestheticize and distanciate its sordid, violent story and underscore the urgent social problem message contained within it. "Laborers considered as 'things' that simply, not even respected as workers. The absurdity of their presence, and of us who allow this state of affairs. It seemed opportune to me to describe this without offering any clear explanations. A critical essay addressed to the social cinema of the time." – KY

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Art Cinema, Counter Cinema: The Cinema of Kiju Yoshida and Mariko Okada

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