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Tokyo Story (1953)
"Tôkyô monogatari" (original title)

Not Rated  |   |  Drama  |  13 March 1972 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 22,983 users  
Reviews: 117 user | 127 critic

An old couple visit their children and grandchildren in the city; but the children have little time for them.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Chieko Higashiyama ...
Tomi Hirayama
Noriko Hirayama
Haruko Sugimura ...
Shige Kaneko
Koichi Hirayama
Kuniko Miyake ...
Fumiko Hirayama - his wife
Kyôko Kagawa ...
Kyôko Hirayama
Eijirô Tôno ...
Sanpei Numata
Nobuo Nakamura ...
Kurazo Kaneko
Shirô Ôsaka ...
Keizo Hirayama (as Shirô Osaka)
Hisao Toake ...
Osamu Hattori
Teruko Nagaoka ...
Yone Hattori
Mutsuko Sakura ...
Oden-ya no onna
Toyo Takahashi ...
Rinka no saikun (as Toyoko Takahashi)
Tôru Abe ...


An elderly couple journey to Tokyo to visit their children and are confronted by indifference, ingratitude and selfishness. When the parents are packed off to a resort by their impatient children, the film deepens into an unbearably moving meditation on mortality Written by Paul Watabe

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

13 March 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tokyo Story  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


The film is notable for its use of the "tatami-mat" shot, in which the camera height is low and remains largely static throughout. See more »


[as children get older, they drift away from their parents]
See more »


References Stagecoach (1939) See more »

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User Reviews

Extraordinary Portrayal of Real Life
14 July 2004 | by See all my reviews

A fantastic film that belies the simplicity of its plot, Tokyo Story is the tale of a vacation gone sadly awry, with an elderly man and woman visiting from the countryside pushed to the sidelines by their busy children in the city. The younger generation (and by extension the "new" Japan) turns its back on the family from which it arose- because of selfishness, because of necessity, or because it's simply the way of the world. The movie provides no easy answers- its melancholy ambiguity is part of its charm. Whatever the case, Ozu delights in portraying the details of everyday life. The emotional resonances of this movie are extraordinary, and some shots (a child picking flowers, an old couple framed by the sea, a woman sitting forlornly at her work desk) are enough to give a sensitive film-goer the shivers. Despite the testimony of some critics, the film is not totally devoid of melodramatic elements (some stock characters and cloying musical motifs spring readily to mind), but the film is founded upon such an obvious love and respect for the importance of real-world interactions that it's hard not to be anything other than enthralled by it.

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