Uchida’s legendary portrait of a peasant family was shot over the course of several seasons in northern Japan. The leader of his household, Kanji, strives to provide for his wife and children but finds himself hobbled by inherited debt.
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Tomu Uchida's most legendary renegade film is a work of elegant simplicity and humanity, universal and moving in its depiction of class strife and a family drama where money strains everyone and nobody is at fault. It's a pity the last reel is still lost, so we can't see if it sticks the landing as well as the Apu Trilogy. But it is full of moments of pure grace that shine through even the fuzziest print.
Unwavering pre-war realism. As noted, the last reel is missing. Was lucky enough to see the latest print (from 2006) that combined the only originally known print from Germany (found 1966) with the recently fount print in Russia (found 1999). Brutal. Beautiful.
A masterpiece, and the fact that the final reel is lost is surely one of cinema's greatest tragedies. This film itself is one of the cinema's greatest tragedies, never have a seen such a painful portrait of poverty and the struggle to survive. Uchida's best 5/5