As World War II escalates, the tight-knit habitants of a street in Tokyo must relocate from their homes so that the government can use the space. Kinoshita's sensitive film-beautifully and ... See full summary »
Like the title of my review states, this movie is an unusual mixture of suspense and humor. It works but it took me a while to get in tune with it. The title of he movie and the opening scenes make it seem like it's going to be a straight forward suspense movie. Three thugs meet in the city and wander out to the suburbs to scope out an isolated house which they have heard has a lot of money stashed in it. They are waiting for the house to mostly empty out so they can sneak in and hopefully keep the killing down to a minimum. Unbeknownst to them, however, they have picked the wrong day for the job as the house ends up being besieged by bill collectors, repair men, potential boarders and money grubbing relatives. Then there is the mysterious man claiming to be an old friend of the family...The movie ends up being a domestic comedy, filled with venal characters who can't stand each other but who have to pretend to get along for various reasons. Kudos to the beautiful Hideko Takamine who transforms herself into a frumpy hausfrau chafing under her domineering mother-in-law. This movie isn't a world classic, but is definitely worth seeing.
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