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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 2,494 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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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 Katô ...
Kodomo (Taro) (as Seiichi Kato)
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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Referenced in I Was Born, But... (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Whole New Ozu: The Old Ozu!
16 April 2002 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

I like Yasujiro Ozu's work, but, even after seeing some of those works that are generally considered best, I was still skeptical of his minimalist style. But then I saw the New Yorker VHS of the silent I Was Born, But...

Let me just say that it is absolutely amazing. It's a nearly perfect film, with great direction, great writing, great jokes, and great acting. This is easily one of the best film about children ever made. The story revolves around two young boys whose dad has just moved to the suburbs near his boss. The kids have some trouble fitting in, and a gang of bullies accost them at first. But soon they conquer the leader of the gang and supplant him.

Later in the film, the kids are challenged with their perception of their father. They think he's everything, of course, but they soon find out that he is only a salaryman. They watch his boss' movies, which include shots of the father fooling around for the entertainment of his employer. The children are flabberghasted, and rebel against their father. I have said it is a great film about childhood; it is also a great film about parenting, as the father and mother have to deal with their sons' disappointment.

Please, please watch this film, especially if you have been disappointed with other works such as Tokyo Story. In my opinion, I Was Born, But... is a much better film. 10/10.


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