Four Postwar Films by Shimizu Hiroshi
35mm Print

Certainly the masterpiece of Shimizu’s postwar career, it is also one of the outstanding neorealist films.”

Alexander Jacoby, Senses of Cinema

An astonishing work of pathos and postwar social realism, the first independent picture of Shimizu Hiroshi masterfully plays to the director’s strengths in its blend of travel, tracking camerawork, and the orbits of children. The gendai-geki road picture, made following the director’s exit from studio Shochiku, concerns a group of vagrant war orphans who learn the value of honest work by clinging to a repatriated soldier. A pivotal scene involving a boy clambering up a cliffside while carrying his friend is a tour de force of emotion, technical prowess, and physicality on the part of the child actors. (Renegade youth-movie auteur Somai Shinji clearly took notes). The children, and project as a whole, were inextricably tied to Shimizu’s personal life: the nonprofessional cast includes eight real-life orphans the director adopted after the war; the beehive” of the title was his nickname for domesticity with the buzzing” kids.

In Japanese with English subtitles

The June 14 screening will be introduced by Sharon Hayashi, chair and associate professor in the Department of Cinema & Media Arts at York University.

Whatever sentimentality the story courts is held in check by the film’s formal accomplishments.”

James Quandt, TIFF Cinematheque

Upcoming in this Series

  • Children Of The Beehive 1
  • Children of the Beehive
  • 蜂の巣の子供たち
  • Japan1948
  • Shimizu Hiroshi
  • 86 35mm
  • NR
  • Four Postwar Films by Shimizu Hiroshi
  • Mr Shosuke Ohara 3
  • Mr. Shosuke Ohara
  • 小原庄助さん
  • Japan1949
  • Shimizu Hiroshi
  • 91 16mm
  • NR
  • Four Postwar Films by Shimizu Hiroshi
  • Image Of A Mother 1
  • Image of a Mother
  • 母のおもかげ
  • Japan1959
  • Shimizu Hiroshi
  • 89 DCP
  • NR
  • Four Postwar Films by Shimizu Hiroshi
  • Sound In The Mist 2
  • Sound in the Mist
  • 霧の音
  • Japan1956
  • Shimizu Hiroshi
  • 84 DCP
  • NR
  • Four Postwar Films by Shimizu Hiroshi