Dancing Girl is an important transitional film, as Naruse deploys some of the flamboyant melodramatic devices that he used in the 1930s in the context of a story that is very much a postwar narrative. Elaborate, distinctive camera movements at moments of high dramatic tension tend to displace acting technique in the representation of psychological states. Used only in conjunction with the two main women characters, Namiko (Takamine Mieko) and her daughter Shinako (Okada Mariko), the camera movements now seem to detract from the emotional weight of the drama.
Yuichiro wants to be an artist but his widowed mother wants him to become a doctor. As radiation leaks permeate the city, he tries to clear his debts by signing up for a dangerous medical experiment.