The Giants and Toys is one of representative movie of Masumara Yasuzo. He rejects the traditional Japanese film. His films have tight speed and complicated story. In Giants and Toys, he talks about the changed Japanese society by emphasizing on individual and freedom. He depicted obviously a desire of human being. Giants and Toys is certainly his early masterpiece. Three companies, Apollo, Giant, and World, compete against each other in the film. The story is developed the story of World that stands up to other companies. The company of World wants to dominate whole caramel market. During the film, I tried to figure out who is winner; however, there is no winner among three companies. The time of Giants and Toys made is in capitalism like America after the dark post war time. Goda is described as hard worker who want to raise sales by all means. Nishi who works under Goda and Goda choose Kyoko as their company mascot. The film develops the relationship between people and how the relationship is ruined because of their desire to success.
Nishi and Yokoyama is college friend. They are working in rival company. When they go for drink, they realize the place is no more fun to them. They are both hard workers in their company. Nishi asked Yokoyama about his company Giants. While Yokoyama tells Nishi about his company, but Nishi hid his company’s concept. They are both in charge of publicity so it means clearly they are rival each other. They are symbol of hard workers in Japan. Unfortunately, the society that they have to be hard workers and compete to each other made their relationship changed. The scene they meet and hang out together should have meaning. It is foreshadow what is going to be happened between two. The relationship and the place are both changed to them.
The relationship between Nishi and Kyoko is one-sided love first. Kyoko likes Nishi while he falls in love with Kurahashi who is introduced by Yokoyama. Kyoko becomes star as Nishi and Goda planed. Even she becomes star, her feeling for Nishi is not changed easily. The relationship between Kurahashi and Nishi seems not equally. Kurahashi might know what Nishi thinks. Nishi wanted to use her to know about Apollo’s plan; however, she does not tell him the truth all the time. I thought Kurahashi looks like older than Nishi, because she knows more than Nishi does and acts like older sister. Their relationship is hard to say they are lover. They seem to love each other, but the love is used for other reason. Their relationship is not equal balanced and so the love cannot be firm. Kyoko and Nishi is not lover, and Kyoko is described loving Nishi first but later she gives up Nishi and she chases her dream. The love is also not first, it is one material for success their company and themselves.
The relationship finally breaks by betrayal. Betrayal could be expected by the audience because their relationship was not equal, same and pure in the previous. Kyoko tired of Nishi and she is taken in Yokoyama’s plot. Hence, the friendship is ruined and the relationship of one-sided love is ruined. When Nishi realize he got betrayal and Yokoyama says Nishi, eat or be eaten, cheat or be cheated. It is very important line in the film. It tells the audience the relationship is broken but also it depicts one of essential meaning what the film wants to say. It is the result of the capitalism. Japan made the great economic growth after the World War II. Making the economic growth, the society is changing fast to more capitalism and materialism. Masumura used the term betrayal to warn how the society could be changed.
The movie Giants and Toys was created during kind of unstable period when Japan began its economic growth. Masumura develops his film reflect this society movement and atmosphere in the film. Friendship, lovers is one subject in the film. The story develops through the each relationship. As showing the both relationship is broken at the end, what they desired and hoped are wrong. They sacrifice their health and family or they cheat each other in the film. What they wanted is becoming No.1 in the caramel market. The ending of the film is insipid. There are no winners, friends and lovers either. Their desire is not only ruined the relationship but also it will ruin the whole Japanese society in soon. The director might want to say and warn the side effect of the capitalism.