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An Autumn Afternoon (1962)

Sanma no aji (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 1964 (USA)
An aging widower arranges a marriage for his only daughter.

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The Yoshi family - husband and wife Kennesuke and Haha, a middle manager at an office and a housewife respectively, and their two adolescent sons Keiji and Ryoichi - have just moved from ... See full summary »

Director: Yasujirô Ozu
Stars: Tatsuo Saitô, Tomio Aoki, Mitsuko Yoshikawa
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Shuhei Hirayama
...
Michiko Hirayama
...
Koichi
Mariko Okada ...
Akiko
Teruo Yoshida ...
Yutaka Miura
Noriko Maki ...
Fusako Taguchi
Shin'ichirô Mikami ...
Kazuo
Nobuo Nakamura ...
Shuzo Kawai
...
Sakuma, The 'Gourd'
Kuniko Miyake ...
Nobuko
...
'Kaoru' no Madame
Michiyo Tamaki ...
Tamako, gosai
Ryûji Kita ...
Shin Horie
Toyo Takahashi ...
'Wakamatsu' no Okami
Shinobu Asaji ...
Youko Sasaki, hisho
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Storyline

In the early 60's in Tokyo, the widower Hirayama is a former captain from the Japanese navy that works as a manager of a factory and lives with his twenty-four year-old daughter Michiko and his son Kazuo in his house. His older son Koichi is married with Akiko that are compulsive consumers and Akiko financially controls their expenses. Hirayama frequently meets his old friends Kawai and Professor Horie, who is married with a younger wife, to drink in a bar. When their school teacher Sakuma comes to a reunion of Hirayama with old school mates, they learn that the old man lives with his daughter that stayed single to take care of him. Michiko lives a happy life with her father and her brother, but Hirayama feels that it is time to let her go and tries to arrange a marriage for her. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Yasujiro Ozu's Last Film

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

1964 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

An Autumn Afternoon  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The placement of the alcoholic drinks may be taken as an early example of product placement. Every bottle has at least half of its label facing the camera, making it possible recognise the brands e.g the star on the beer bottle labels, the Johnny Walker bottle, the bottles on the shelves in the bar. There are also two large Suntory signs on the bar wall. The name of the bar - Tory's Bar - could be a reference to "Tory's Whisky", released after the Second World War. However, the different drinks are made/ imported by two rival companies - Suntory (e.g. whisky) and Sapporo (e.g. the beer). The placement is unlikely to be due to any commercial sponsorship and is more likely to be an indication of Ozu's vision of the characters and their drinking habits. See more »

Quotes

Shuhei Hirayama: [to himself, last lines] Alone, eh?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ikite wa mita keredo - Ozu Yasujirô den (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An updated version of BANSHUN
4 June 2009 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

My favorite Yasujiro Ozu film is BANSHUN. And so, as I sat watching SANMA NO AJI, I quickly realized that this film is essentially a retooling of BANSHUN. Both films are about a devoted daughter living quite happily with her widower father. The father, however, realizes that the daughter is giving up a lot, so it's his goal to get her out and married for her own good. There are some differences, though, in the films. In SANMA NO AJI, it's not just the father but also the young lady's employer who sees a need for her to marry. In addition to taking care of her father, there also is a younger brother in the home. Still, it is essentially the same story with a few twists--and in color.

It's also highly reminiscent of many of the mid to late Ozu films in a variety of ways. Like his usual style, the camera is stationary and often is at floor level--with cuts instead of closeups. You may not notice this at first, but it's clearly the director's trademark. In addition, the film has the typical slow and gentle pace and is about the conflicts between modern Japanese life and tradition. In this sense, there's not a lot that's too new about the film other than a light and modern (for 1962) soundtrack--very bouncy yet gentle.

As for the film, the father (Shuhei) has a pretty nice life. He has a nice job, often goes out with friends to drink and Michiko (the daughter) takes care of his needs at home. However, as the film progresses he notices in other people's relationships that something is missing. In particular, meeting with an old school teacher from 40 years ago is a wake-up, as this old man also lives with his unmarried daughter--and his life is a bit pathetic. Shuhei is afraid that in later years, his and his daughter will have a similar relationship. So, he and his married son go about trying to arrange a marriage for Michiko--who does want to marry, though judging by her outward appearance and insistence that she wants to stay home and take care of her father, you's never know it.

Overall, it's an incredibly slow but satisfying film and a nice end to Ozu's career, as it is his last film. Well worth seeing and full of lovely and realistic vignettes. For those who are looking for action and excitement, you may not like this film. For those who can appreciate a slower and more deliberately paced film, this is hard to beat. A lovely portrait of life in Japan circa 1962.

By the way, is it me or did those people in the film really drink a lot?! Wow!


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