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Kikuji is the scion of an Osaka merchant family whose traditional power is matrilineal. Instructed by his overbearing mother and grandmother to give them an heiress for the family business, he stands by helplessly as his wife is thrown out of the house for producing a son. Driven to a life of dissipation - his mistresses also fail to produce daughters - in the end he is just too tired to care. The film presages Ichikawa's The Makioka Sisters in its World War II nostalgia and visual sophistication.