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970 Ratings

Early Summer


Directed by Yasujirô Ozu
Japan, 1951


A seemingly simple story, Early Summer is one of Yasujiro Ozu’s most complex works—a nuanced examination of life’s changes across three generations.

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Early Summer Directed by Yasujirô Ozu
At its core, EARLY SUMMER is a portrait of life—honest and humane. It’s not the big events which define life, Ozu seems to argue. It’s the spaces in between where all the substance lives. Ozu’s focus might seem small, but within this family’s small world and through this family’s eyes, we see a universe.
June 26, 2015
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…This may seem like a rather disparate preface to Early Summer, for it is definitively situated in Ozu’s late period, midway between the twin milestones of Late Spring and Tokyo Story… Perhaps this is what makes it my own personal favorite of all Ozu’s films. With a larger canvas than the intensive focus of Late Spring and a looser structure than the exacting symmetry of Tokyo Story, Early Summer feels freer, wider, more open even as it evinces the full-fledged mastery of the mature Ozu.
April 04, 2005
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In many ways, it’s the apotheosis of Ozu’s investigations of domestic, geographical and emotional space. Among all of his films that portray the dissolution of a family, it is one of the few to depict this process from beginning to end. Where The Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family and Tokyo Story begin with their respective families already partly divided, Early Summer opens with a tight, contented family unit and concludes with the family members scattered across Japan.
August 02, 2004
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