Ai Shinozaki - Japanese Hot Idol

Although the first home-grown movies appeared before the end of the last century, it wasn't until after World War I that they became something more than adaptations of stage plays and kabuki. The Nikkatsu and Shochiku film companies started at this time. From about 1920, Japanese film was divided into two main categories: Jidai-geki, or period films and Gendai-geki, or films with modern settings. The jidai-geki usually centered around a lone swordsman, who struggled to reconcile the conflict between his obligations (giri), and his true feelings (ninjo). This theme later became central to the gangster, or yakuza genre, originated by the Toei comapny in the 1960's. Gendai-geki reflected social changes of the day and individual director's views on life and society.