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Tokyo Story (1953)

Tôkyô monogatari (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 13 March 1972 (USA)
An old couple visit their children and grandchildren in the city; but the children have little time for them.

Director:

Writers:

(scenario), (scenario)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Chieko Higashiyama ...
...
...
...
...
...
...
Nobuo Nakamura ...
Shirô Ôsaka ...
Hisao Toake ...
Teruko Nagaoka ...
Yone Hattori
Mutsuko Sakura ...
Oden-ya no onna
...
Rinka no saikun (as Toyoko Takahashi)
Tôru Abe ...
Tetsudou-shokuin
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Storyline

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 busy, impatient children, the film deepens into an unbearably moving meditation on mortality. Written by Paul Watabe

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

|

Release Date:

13 March 1972 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tokyo Story  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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?

Trivia

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 »

Goofs

At timer mark 1:45:46, when the children are visiting their mother at home and leave the room to talk with the father in an adjoining room, just as they sit on the floor, you see the shadow of the boom-mic just drop into the scene and back out again, just over the sons head on the top right of the screen. This shadow is well into the frame against the edge of what appears to be a bookshelf and should not be considered a masking mistake of the projectionist. See more »

Quotes

Shukichi Hirayama: [Looking at sunrise the morning after Tomi died] It was such a beautiful dawn.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Cotton Wool (2017) See more »

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User Reviews

 
beautiful meditation on old age and family; simple and moving
17 June 2002 | by See all my reviews

I can't take my mind off this movie. The story is both universally human (old age, the end of life, parents and children) and specifically Japanese. The movie tells the viewer so much about Japanese middle class life in the 1950s: eating and sleeping; mourning the war dead; clothes and home furnishings; spoiled kids; a doctor's office; a schoolroom; life in Tokyo and small towns; how family members talk to each other; old men's drinking habits; a resort hotel. But while we see all these details of a real time and place, we are constantly drawn into reflection on the meaning of human life and relationships. The reflection emerges effortlessly from the simple narrative and the specifics. The director never annoyingly tells us how to feel, he is not preaching and not drawing attention to himself. (There is none of that "hey, I'm making a moving movie" crud that you get in Hollywood treatment of these topics). He just lets the story unfold in a quiet, natural way. It's not for folks who only like "action" movies. I put "action" in quotes because this movie is about the real action in life--enjoying life, sharing it with others, facing the end of it.


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