top of page

Late Chrysanthemums

Late Chrysanthemums (Japanese: 晩菊, Bangiku) is a 1954 film directed by Mikio Naruse. During tough times after the war, four retired geisha find themselves in a constant struggle to make enough dough to pay the bills (a common theme in Naruse films; he too grew up in a family that had difficultly making ends meet).

I thought it was okay but not great. I got a bit tired of the constant haggling and asking for money and attempts to collect debts, but Haruko Sugimura was entertaining as a character not so different from the hardheaded selfish woman she played in Ozu's Tokyo Story (1953). The film also shows geisha in a new but harsh light, as these middle-aged women have come to the realization that the good ol' days are gone and that romance and kindness are of little to no import or use to them anymore.


bottom of page