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The story of 16-year-old Riyo who journeys to Hawaii in 1918 to marry a man she has never met, except through photographs and letters they have exchanged. Hoping to escape a troubled past and to start anew, Riyo is bitterly disappointed upon her arrival: her husband is twice her age and Hawaii is not the paradise she expected. As Riyo comes to terms with her new home, she discovers a land full of hardship, struggle--and unexpected joy.Written by
based on true events, this movie is a little gem and a visual feast
Japan 1918. The story of 16-year old Ryu begins with the death of her father. As it will be revealed later, both of her parents have died of tuberculosis. In this desperate situation Ryus aunt has arranged a marriage with a Japanese man in Hawai, whom they know only from its picture. By her arrival in Hawai ryu discovers that her new husband is much older as in the photograph ,and that he lives in very humble circumstances beside a sugar cane plantage were he works on. Ryu not used to the hard labour on the plantage and in despair over her situation in her new home thinks of running away. She soon discovers that she has nowhere to go. The friendship to Kana, a female co-worker of hers, gives her new hope and strength. This picture is based on real events between 1907 and the 1920s, when thousands of Asian woman were married off to men in America, whom they only knew from their picture. This not very well known picture is well written and acted. The location is breathtaking. This film also features Mifune Toshiro in his very last screen appearance as a Benshi (narrator of silent movies). This film gives some insight of Japanese culture here and across the ocean. A must see!
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