Search This Blog

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Sayonara (1957)

Set during the Korean war, an ace Air Force pilot (Marlon Brando) is re-assigned to Japan at the request of his fiancee's (Patricia Owens) father (Kent Smith), an Air Force General. But instead of being reunited with his fiancee, he finds himself attracted to a Japanese entertainer (Miiko Taka). Based on the novel by James Michener (HAWAII) and directed by Joshua Logan (PICNIC). Pushing the 2 1/2 hour mark, this lush romance focuses on racism and prejudice and the clash of cultures. Beautifully shot in the Technirama format entirely on location in Japan by Ellsworth Fredericks (SEVEN DAYS IN MAY), the screenplay by Paul Osborn carefully covers the appalling military policy at that time of not allowing Japanese wives to emigrate to the U.S. with their spouses. Fortunately, it's done without the heavy handed preachy hammer of tolerance that a less skilled film maker (cough*Stanley Kramer*cough) would probably have done. The film's only downside is the casting of Ricardo Montalban as a Japanese Kabuki actor which plays even worse today than it did in 1957. Red Buttons and Miyoshi Umeki as an interracial couple both received Oscars for their performances. There's a lovely Franz Waxman underscore. With James Garner, Martha Scott and Reiko Kuba. 

No comments:

Post a Comment