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I Was Born, But... (1932)
"Otona no miru ehon - Umarete wa mita keredo" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  3 June 1932 (Japan)
7.8
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Ratings: 7.8/10 from 2,481 users   Metascore: 91/100
Reviews: 19 user | 39 critic | 4 from Metacritic.com

Two young brothers become the leaders of a gang of kids in their neighborhood. Their father is an office clerk who tries for advancement by playing up his boss. When the boys visit the boss... See full summary »

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(scenario), (adaptation), 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tatsuo Saitô ...
Chichi
Tomio Aoki ...
Keiji (as Tokkan-Kozou)
Mitsuko Yoshikawa ...
Haha (Yoshi's Wife)
Hideo Sugawara ...
Ryoichi
Takeshi Sakamoto ...
Juuyaku (Iwasaki, Executive)
Teruyo Hayami ...
Fujin (Iwasaki's wife)
Seiichi Kato ...
Kodomo (Taro)
Shoichi Kofujita ...
Kozou (Delivery boy)
Seiji Nishimura ...
Sensei (Teacher)
Zentaro Iijima ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Shôtarô Fujimatsu ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Masao Hayama ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Michio Sato ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Kuniyasu Hayashi ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Akio Nomura ...
Asobi nakama (Friend)
Edit

Storyline

Two young brothers become the leaders of a gang of kids in their neighborhood. Their father is an office clerk who tries for advancement by playing up his boss. When the boys visit the boss' house with their father, they discover that their dad has been making a fool of himself to please his boss, who's son is an outwitted member of the boys' gang. The brothers' revolt claiming that hierarchy should be based on ability, not on social background. Ozu's charming film is a social satire that draws from the antics of childhood as well as the tragedy of maturity. Written by Peter Renoir Nakai

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

boss | neighborhood | gang | boy | hierarchy | See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Release Date:

3 June 1932 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Children of Tokyo  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Referenced in The Life and Works of Yasujiro Ozu (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

early masterwork
3 December 2003 | by See all my reviews

An early family drama by Ozu that starts as a coming of age-`Japanese 400 blows'- and develops into a deep essay about identity, acceptation, self-respect, honor and exemplary. Ozu has a unique style for filming rituals, and these rituals are the dynamos of Tradition. In portraying a fractured relationship between a father and his sons, Ozu reflects on the transition between an old dying order and the arrival of a new one (both kids dream of being officials in the army, some ten years before Hiroshima). This works also as a metaphor of Japan on its way to technocracy, westernization and materialism, with its small bourgeois suburbia, the ever-passing trains and even home movies and child games where kids cross themselves in the Christian fashion. There's an unforgettable traveling shot with a choreography of yawns, some recognizable `Tatami' angles, and other technical achievements that prove that Ozu mastered his craft very early on (in fact, though silent, the film looks years ahead that many contemporary Hollywood productions). A rare film and indeed a very accessible one to the complexities of the cinema of Ozu.


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