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In their humble two-room apartment, the Maeda family seem ever so self-effacing - but their modest façade hides another truth. Daughter Tomoko is the mistress of a bestselling author with well-lined pockets. Son Minoru embezzles funds with his lover Yukie (Ayako Wakao, Red Angel), who has her own hidden agenda. And father Tokizo (Yunosuke Ito, Ikiru, Lone Wolf and Cub) is a former military man who swears he will never return to the poverty he knew during the war, no matter what the cost. One after another, those affected by the Maedas' schemes show up on their doorstep. But these visitors all have their own duplicitous agendas. With each knock on the door, the gamesmanship reaches a whole new level. Elegant Beast was adapted by Kaneto Shindo (Onibaba, Naked Island) from his own stage play. Director Yuzo Kawashima, mentor of Shohei Imamura and a major influence on the Japanese New Wave, makes magnificent widescreen use of the single apartment setting to deliver a ferocious satire on Japan's post-war economic miracle.