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Festival Year Festival Section

Alternative Title 1 [CASTLE OF WIND AND CLOUDS]
Alternative Title 3
Country Japan
Release Date 1928
Production Co. Kinugasa Eiga Renmei [Shimogamo Studio Kyoto]
Director Yamazaki, Toko

Format   Speed (fps)
35mm   18
Footage   Time
5096 ft.   76'

Archive Source National Film Center
Print Notes Didascalie in giapponese / Japanese intertitles.

Chojiro Hayashi
Akiko Chihaya
Ippei Soma
Soroku Kazama
Yoshie Nakagawa
Other Credits
Other Information
Donald Sosin, pianoforte.
prima proiezione / released 10.2.1928
Program Notes
The title betrays the sub-genre of this period drama (jidai geki), treachery and conspiracy within a samurai clan. The two antagonists are the sinister Sannosuke (Ippei Soma) and the young Shinhachi (Chojiro Hayashi), who returns home full of optimism at the beginning of the film after three years' service in the capital. He will be seeing his fiancée Chigusa (Akiko Chihaya) again - but the prince has taken her as his concubine. From then on Shinhachi is suspected of vengeance-inspired treachery against the head of the clan, even though he is loyal to the point of self-sacrifice and resists all incitements of the scheming Sannosuke. He refuses to betray his duty (giri) on account of personal feelings (ninjo). Even after his older brother's death by seppuku [ritual suicide] and the imprisonment of Chigusa, Shinhachi saves his clan leader from poisoning by Sannosuke and the prince's new favourite. Good wins through politically, but the lovers cannot be united in this corrupt world. Chigusa goes to her death, and Shinhachi abroad into exile.
The film is punctuated by long, lyrical intertitles - providing precious indications of the stylistic register of the benshi who would have narrated the film - and by at least five beautifully choreographed fight scenes.
After the financial disaster of his independently produced experiment Kurutta Ippeiji (A Page of Madness, 1926), Teinosuke Kinugasa started making jidai geki at the Shimogamo studio in Kyoto for Shochiku, which until then had specialised in contemporary gendai geki appealing to its predominantly female audience. In 1927 Kinugasa launched the glittering screen career of Chojiro Hayashi, a new type of jidai geki hero. In sharp contrast with such heroic, tough stars of the genre as Tsumasaburo Bando (Orochi) and Denjiro Okochi (Chuji Tabi Nikki), Hayashi's screen persona was that of a bidanshi, a slim youth whose androgynous beauty rivalled the attractions of any female star without losing any masculine appeal. After Hayashi left Shochiku in 1937, he was to change his screen name to Kazuo Hasegawa. Fuun Joshi marked the beginning of the actor's lifelong working relationship with Kinugasa.
As with Ai No Machi, a nitrate positive of Fuun Joshi survived in Europe and was preserved by the Cinémathèque Royale de Belgique in Brussels. The film was shipped with others by Shochiku to Berlin in 1929, at a time when the company was trying to develop an export market in Europe - a project which, however, was to be unsuccessful (for more on this, see Nippon). - MLF