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Ôoku review
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Review of Ôoku

Part 1:One night, a samurai Nakano Kiyoshige (Itao Itsuji) visits Nikkei (Tanaka Yoji), the chief priest of Chisenin, in the middle of heavy snowfall. He entrusts a baby and a large sum of money to Nikkei and asks him to raise the child. 14 years later, Omiyo (Sawajiri Erika) has grown up to be an outstanding beauty. She visits the Nakano residence thinking that Kiyoshige, who secretly met Nikkei, is her father. However, she hears from him that she is the child of the 10th Tokugawa shogun Ieharu and his concubine Omino. Moreover, Ieharu was poisoned and killed by Ienari’s (Narimiya Hiroki) faction which plotted to make him the shogun. It is also a known fact that Omino died after giving birth to Omiyo. Omiyo cries as she listens to the story and asks to enter the inner palace in order to avenge her parents. She gets inside through a good word put in by Kiyoshige, who is Ienari’s close aide, and immediately catches the attention of Ienari with the help of the high-ranking Osaki no Tsubone (Asano Yuko). Looking at Omiyo, the female servants Kuzuoka (Washio Machiko), Yoshino (Yamaguchi Kaori) and Urao (Kubota Maki) feel alarm. At that moment in the inner palace, the concubine Oraku (Asai Erina) is in favour with Ienari. But after she gives birth to his heir, he completely loses interest and ignores her. Omiyo recommends that Oraku visit Chisenin and then sends in the handsome priest Nichien (Kaneko Noboru), scheming for a liaison between Oraku and him. With this weakness as her trump card, she tames Oraku. After that, Omiyo uses her natural beauty and the wiles that Kiyoshige had schooled her in to gain Ienari’s affection. Meanwhile, Chisenin has become the place of worship of the shogun’s family as a result of Omiyo’s counsel. Taking a dim view of Chisenin’s growing power and wealth, Wakisaka Yasutada (Hamada Manabu), the magistrate who is responsible for the management of temples and shrines, tries to curb the expanding influence of Kiyoshige by suggesting that Ienari make Oraku’s child his heir. However, Omiyo checks Wakisaka’s movements with certain action. She soon gives birth, but her child is a princess. She obsesses if the next one will be a boy even as she steadily cements her position in the inner palace. One day, Omiyo exchanges words with a female servant Oshima (Watanabe Mayu) in the garden of Chisenin. She is profoundly intrigued by Oshima who for some reason regards the rivalry swirling in the inner palace soberly. After that, Omiyo meets Oshima in secret over and over again. Oshima’s pure heart and the time in contact with her gives Omiyo peace. This eventually progresses to a forbidden love affair but … …
Added by Lacey
3 years ago on 6 February 2016 14:33