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Equinox Flower (1958)
"Higanbana" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  June 1977 (USA)
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 1,716 users  
Reviews: 13 user | 32 critic

A businessman clashes with his elder daughter over her choice of a husband.

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Title: Equinox Flower (1958)

Equinox Flower (1958) on IMDb 8/10

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Cast

Credited cast:
Shin Saburi ...
Wataru Hirayama
...
Kiyoko Hirayama
Ineko Arima ...
Setsuko Hirayama
...
Fumiko Mikami
Keiji Sada ...
Masahiko Taniguchi
Teiji Takahashi ...
Shotaru Kondo
Miyuki Kuwano ...
Hisako Hirayama
...
Shukichi Mikami
Chieko Naniwa ...
Hatsu Sasaki
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yôko Chimura ...
Nurse
Ureo Egawa ...
Schoolmate Nakanishi
Gazan Hasegawa
Aiko Ikumi ...
Inn maid
Kentarô Imai ...
Station attendant
Masahiko Inoue ...
Station attendant
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Storyline

A business man is often approached by friends for advice and help regarding marriage as well as family and romantic relationships. He is always very calmly and objectively able to give great insight and assistance to these particular situations. However, when it comes time for him to be objective regarding his oldest daughter, he finds it very difficult... Written by Karl Engel <cassiel@ix.netcom.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

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Release Date:

June 1977 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Flor do Equinócio  »

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Color:

(Agfacolor)
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This was Yasujirô Ozu's first film in color. See more »

Connections

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

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User Reviews

 
Very slow--even for an Ozu film--but still well worth seeing.
4 October 2011 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

It's pretty obvious when the film begins that it's one of Yasujirô Ozu's newest films. That's because unlike almost all of his movies, this one is filmed in color. In fact, it's his first color film. Like other Ozu films it features a camera positioned very low--like the cameraman is sitting on the floor. It's odd but works in Ozu's films because of the traditional Japanese tables and futons--all very close to the floor. The plot unfolds very slowly and the film also is a domestic drama--about a daughter who may be marrying and moving out of her home. This is a very common theme--young people moving to adulthood and the sort of conflicts this creates as well as conflicts between traditional and modern values . And, like so many of his later films, it features some of the same old reliable actors. One thing you've gotta say about Ozu--when he found a formula that worked, he REALLY stuck with it. While his films are adored and are often considered masterpieces, there is a strong sense of déjà vu as you watch them!

This is the story of a middle-aged man and his family. Early in on the film, you learn that the father and mother had an arranged marriage--something very common in Japan up until recently. You can tell that Dad was not thrilled by this and he even likes the idea of people picking their own spouses. Yet, when his own daughter wants to marry a man of her choosing, he refuses to give consent. He's adamant--even though he agrees with the concept of allowing your grown children to run their own lives--provided, of course, they are not HIS children! This is MILDLY humorous (it's cute the way the father gets manipulated repeatedly) and a nice critique of post-war Japan--when families, values and norms were all in flux. In other words, this man's conflicts were a mirror of conflicts in Japan as a whole--the old Japan and the new, and much less tradition-bound Japan.

While this is a beautifully made film, you should be aware that like so many of Ozu's films, it has a very leisurely pace. My advice is although he was a wonderful filmmaker, you might first try some more approachable directors films--such as Kurosawa or a Zatoichi film. That's because Western audiences often balk at such slow pacing (particularly here in hyperactive America). If you do watch it, brew a pot of tea or coffee to help you stay focused--it's worth it, as it's a sweet and exceptional film.


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