The Crucified Lovers: the story of Mizoguchi Kenji’s melodrama leans heavily on some interesting themes (the strict rules and corruption of XVIIth century Japan, the certainty that wicked and virtuous will share the same destiny), but fails to engage fully on an emotional level. The main issues is that the main characters are shallow, and their relationships unconvincing. The performances, nevertheless, are fine as they are: Shindoo Eitaroo exhudes insecurity as the villain of the story; Kagawa Kyooko and Hasegawa Kazuo match well as the central couple; and Minamida Yooko pure, soft beauty is a great choice for the ingénue. The film looks very good: the costume are very rich, the locations well-defined. Miyagawa Kazuo’s cinematography is very attractive: the camera is fluid, well in concert with the blocking, the frames always meaningful.