Following World War II, a retired professor approaching his autumn years finds his quality of life drastically reduced in war-torn Tokyo. Denying despair, he pursues writing and celebrates his birthday with his adoring students.
Yuzo and his fiancée Masako spend their Sunday afternoon together, trying to have a good time on just thirty-five yen. They manage to have many small adventures, especially because Masako's... See full summary »
An anthology of overlapping vignettes exploring the lives of a variety of characters who happen to live in a suburbial shantytown atop a rubbish dump: The boy Roku-chan lives in a fantasy world in which he is a tram conductor. In his fantasy world, he is both the tram and the tram driver and follows a set route and schedule through the dump, reciting the refrain "Dodeska-den", "clickety-clack", mimicking the sound of his vehicle. Ryotaro, a hairbrush maker by trade, is saddled with supporting many children whom his unfaithful wife Misao[c] has conceived in different adulterous affairs, but is wholeheartedly devoted to them. A pair of drunken day laborers (Masuda and Kawaguchi) who engage in wife-swapping, only to return to their own wives the next day as though nothing has happened. A stoic, bleak man named Hei is frequented by Ocho who appears to be his ex-wife, and he watches emotionless as she takes care of his domestic chores. Shima, the man with the tic, is always defending his ... Written by
The crew simply called the set the town without seasons. See more »
Suicidal Old Man:
[Haltingly, opening up to Mr. Tanba, who patiently listens to him]
I'm fed up with everything now... Life is nothing but pain to me. When I get up in the morning and get ready for breakfast... thinking I have to do everything all over again, I just lose my strength. Food doesn't taste good. I lose my appetite.
Suicidal Old Man:
[continues, as Mr. Tanba listens silently]
When I go to the public bath, I'm disgusted to see myself in the mirror. Naked, I look really disgusting and filthy. I can't stand myself. At this...
[...] See more »
The title is onomatopoeic, the sound of a streetcar clacking on the rails. It is metaphoric for all that the people who live in the dump cannot have. The misery of those people is illustrated by the passing streetcar which represents the relatively unobtainable rich life of the middle class. The pathos of the little boy and his beloved yet sadly insane father is most touching. This was Kurosawa's first film in colour and he uses beautifully shocking hues, colours seen only in dreams. The movie is surreal and surpassing in beauty. The compassion for humanity is the underling force, but as always, Kurosawa is focused on capturing the beauty of the film. It is a masterwork by a genius of cinema.
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