Based on a novel by Ogai Mori, The Mistress is the story of romance versus reality, and how personal freedom and tradition are at odds. Okama (Hideko Takamine) is burdened with financial worries over how she will take care of her father. Because of an earlier indiscretion, Okama would not normally be accepted as a marriageable woman (the setting is the early 20th century). So when she has a chance to become the mistress of a wealthy man, she accepts when she is told that her role as mistress is only temporary until marriage can be arranged. As time goes by, Okama discovers that she was deceived and is forced to make a hard choice -- stay a mistress and live well, or leave and subsist at a poverty level.
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