The Kohayakawa family is thrown into distress when childlike father Manbei takes up with his old mistress, in one of Ozu’s most deftly modulated blendings of comedy and tragedy. —The Criterion Collection
Yasujiro Ozu was born in the old Fukagawa district of Tokyo, to a fertilizer merchant, in 1903. In 1923, after a couple of years as an assistant teacher in rural Japan, Ozu was hired as assistant cameraman at the Shochiku Motion Picture Company. Early in his career, Ozu began to experiment with an idiosyncratic film style that ran contrary to the conventions of Japanese or Hollywood cinema of the day. He strove to reduce and simplify his film style; he cast such mainstays as the fade, the dissolve, and the pan from his cinematic palette. He shot solely from a low camera angle, using a 50mm lens, and he subordinated spatial continuity to visual aesthetics. Ozu directed his first film in 1927,The Sword of Penitence. In 1932, he began to hit his creative stride with the touching comedy I Was Born, But…, which was his first commercial success. During World War II, he made few films such as There Was a Father.
After the war, Ozu reached his creative peak and made some of his finest… read more
I love that 100 yen scene! It’s funny and contemplative all at once. Akiko (Hara) in kimono and Noriko (Tsukasa) in modern dress talking about their life, both are beautiful. I also like the way Fumiko (played by that alluring Aratama) teases her childlike father with such anger that actually comes from affection.
Ozu's penultimate film and the last of only three he made away from Shochiku is one of his most visually beautiful. The story contrasts the older and younger generations in a large family, concentrating on the shenanigans and lust for life of the elderly head of the family and the proposed marriages of his daughter and widowed daughter-in-law. Emotions and intentions are starkly exposed in another fabulous Ozu film..
This movie was quite a strange experience for me. It almost felt like someone had tampered with an Ozu film and inserted some montages and contrasting background score to mess it up. If this was Ozu’s… read review
La petite musique d’Ozu – 08/03/2009
Ozu nous sert là encore un film raffiné, comme on s’y attache, qui nous parle d’un Japon disparu et des rapports familiaux inter-générationnels, de ce temps… read review
Compared to works such as Tokyo Story and Early Summer, this is a much more light-hearted offering from Ozu. His usual themes of generational differences, parent-child relations, and parent-child expectations… read review