As the film begins, Takao (Akira Terao) and Michiko (Kanako Higuchi) have already pulled up their Tokyo roots and moved to a village that is Takao’s ancestral home. They visit a thatched cottage that serves as a memorial shrine (amidado) for the village dead and chat with the attendant, the spry 96-year-old Oume (Tanie Kitabayashi). Together they admire the view — from an inspiring distance. Oume, it turns out, is a kind of sage, whose thoughts and observations are a popular feature in a column in a local newsletter. Her amanuensis is a mute, sweetly smiling young woman named Sayuri (Manami Konishi), who is as devoted to Oume as Oume is to the souls of her beloved dead.
Takao also reunites with Koda-sensei (Takahiro Tamura), his beloved junior high-school teacher, now retired, who spends his day beating the futon with his wooden sword or practicing calligraphy in his tastefully decorated Japanese-style house, overlooking a picture-perfect Japanese garden. He and his devoted wife, Yone (Kyoko Kagawa), are always dressed elegantly in Japanese-style clothes and never touch anything electronic.
When they are not interacting with these and other villagers — wonderful folks all — Takao and Michiko take restful walks in the woods (with Michiko stopping once to ecstatically hug a tree), potter around their house (which has been in Takao’s family for ages) and otherwise soothe away stress. Michiko makes a miraculous recovery from the panic attacks that drove her from her research work at a major Tokyo hospital, while Takao thinks about writing again, after selling nothing for years. —The Japan Times
Takashi Koizumi (小泉堯史 Koizumi Takashi) (November 6, 1944, Mito) is a Japanese film director.
After graduation from Waseda University, Koizumi started to work as an assistant director of Akira Kurosawa for 28 years. His directorial debut Ame Agaru is based on the script written by late Kurosawa, and won many awards. His other three features have all achieved great success across Japan. —Shanghai International Film Festival