Gembaku no ko (Children of Hiroshima) (1952)
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Critic Reviews for Gembaku no ko (Children of Hiroshima)
With Japan facing a new nuclear crisis, this beautifully composed and acted heart-wrencher couldn't be more timely.
A sense of immediacy, or working through recent and almost unfathomable trauma, is palpable in the film, much of which was shot in Hiroshima itself.
Audience Reviews for Gembaku no ko (Children of Hiroshima)
In "Children of Hiroshima," Takako(Nobuko Otowa), a teacher, is returning to her home in Hiroshima for the first time in years, having moved to an island to live with relatives after the atomic blast. On her return, she finds the city in the process of rebuilding but also Iwakichi(Osamu Takizawa), a former employee of her father's, and now nearly blind, forced to beg on the streets. At least, while Natsue(Niwa Saito), a friend and former colleague, is infertile, she also works as a midwife as she and her husband(Tsutomu Shimomoto) are in the process of adopting a baby. Takako's next stop is to look up their three surviving kindergarten students. "Children of Hiroshima" is a heartbreaking movie shot in the finest neo-realist style, as it successfully takes the tragedy of the bombing down to a personal level with the city in the background. What soon becomes apparent in the individual characters' stories is the indiscriminate nature of the deaths, depending on where a person was when the bomb went off, thus breaking up families and creating large amounts of orphans. Even years later, the radiation still kills, randomly and suddenly. Actually, nobody got away totally unscathed in the city. Takako's most visible wound is the glass shard in her shoulder but to audiences of her time, it probably seemed tragic that she had little hope for marriage.
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