"Dragnet Girl" ~ CJS Fall Films Series 2012
Tokiko, played by the inimitable Kinuyo Tanaka, is a typist and a tough moll to Jyoji, a retired champion boxer and gang leader. Hiroshi, a fresh face among the members, idolizes Jyoji and neglects his school studies. Trying to keep him on the right path, Hiroshi's sister Kazuko asks Jyoji to help her brother to leave the gang and along the way, Jyoji falls for her. Although many critics have painted Ozu as a traditionalist, this is one of many works that proves the falsehood of this stereotype. A gangster film in form and spirit, Dragnet Girl evidences Ozu’s love of American cinema in every frame. Freda Freidberg writes, “Dragnet Girl is stylish and pulp filmmaking at its best…(it) remains irresistibly inviting. Loaded with sweeping style (tracking shots, expressionistic lighting) Dragnet Girl is an effective mix of suspense, comedy, and melodrama. It is fun because this is a rare look at Ozu in an uncharacteristically ‘busy’ mode of filmmaking, yet the perfect rhythm, master of control of visual storytelling, and trademark visual motifs still make Dragnet Girl notably Ozu.”
DJ performance by Arwulf-Arwulf.