Tomu Uchida's A Fugitive From The Past (1965) is forgotten New Wave classic, even though Uchida was from the Kurosawa/Ozu generation of filmmakers. It is a postwar police procedural on one level and calls to mind Kurosawa's brilliant Stray Dog in the manhunt for the man (played by Rentaro Mikuni) who evaded the police and justice for 10 years. Uchida does an excellence job of depicting the postwar chaos and poverty. This struggle for survival is manifested in the depiction of the life of the prostitute (Sachiko Hidari of The Insect Woman fame) that the criminal gives a large amount of money after making his escape. The money has allowed her to pay the debts that had her working at a brothel, support her family, and to depart to Tokyo to find better paying work than was available in Hokkaido at the time. It is this woman's gratitude and hope to see her benefactor in order to thank him for his generosity that is ultimately his undoing. She eventually finds the man despite his new identity and life in Kyoto prefecture. When she visits him and exposes him he feels the need to kill her and his male secretary. Eventually the original Hokkaido detective (Junzaburo Ban) and an new inspector, an early role for Ken Takakura, expose the false identity and get the criminal to confess. However, we learn that he didn't originally kill the family or start the fire that devastated a village-rather it was his traveling companions(recently released form prison) who committed the crime. He kept the money but used it for good in order to compensate for the crimes from which he profited, thus a third strand of the film is concerned with karma and spiritual atonement. If there is any weakness in the film, it might be that length somewhat slows the flow of the film, but also allows it to have the scope to encompass three separate stories within one film. Uchida uses a variety of special effects to depict flashbacks to the violence of the past, inventive crane shots and other effective camera angles to punctuate the action on the screen. This is an impressive film that deserves a bigger audience.