In 17th century Kyoto, Osan is married to Ishun, a wealthy miserly scroll-maker. When Osan is falsely accused of having an affair with the best worker, Mohei, the pair flee the city and ... See full summary »
A woman looks back on her family's life in Tokyo before and during WWII. A maid arrives from the countryside to work for an upper middle class family. She fits in well, but everyone's emotions are stirred up with the arrival of a student.
Most Naruse films seem to be about geisha's or ex-geisha's. This however is a tale of everyday farming folk, as in the long running UK radio soap, The Archers. Much of the long 128 minutes is spent demonstrating paddy field farming techniques. However, there is a fair bit of family drama around marriage, succession, land, kids leaving home, children disappointing parents and vice versa, the prevalent theme being the way industrialisation enables young people to escape from the unappealing nature of farming and the control exercised by their elders.
Some beautiful scenery, brought out by Naruse's filming/ editing and intermittently convincing characters go some way to compensate for a glacial pace and a somewhat over attention to details. However, drama is only present from time to time so some patience is required.
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