8.0/10
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Early Spring (1956)

Sôshun (original title)
A young man and his wife struggle within the confines of their passionless relationship while he has an extramarital romance.

Director:

Yasujirô Ozu

Writers:

Kôgo Noda (screenplay), Yasujirô Ozu (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chikage Awashima Chikage Awashima ... Masako Sugiyama
Ryô Ikebe ... Shôji Sugiyama
Teiji Takahashi Teiji Takahashi ... Taizô Aoki
Keiko Kishi Keiko Kishi ... Chiyo Kaneko
Chishû Ryû ... Kiichi Onodera
Sô Yamamura ... Yutaka Kawai
Takako Fujino Takako Fujino ... Terumi Aoki
Masami Taura Masami Taura ... Kôichi Kitagawa
Haruko Sugimura ... Tamako Tamura
Kumeko Urabe Kumeko Urabe ... Shige Kitagawa
Kuniko Miyake ... Yukiko Kawai
Eijirô Tôno ... Tokichi Hattori
Kôji Mitsui ... Hirayama
Daisuke Katô Daisuke Katô ... Sakamoto
Fujio Suga Fujio Suga ... Tanabe
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Storyline

A young man and his wife struggle within the confines of their passionless relationship while he has an extramarital romance.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

25 September 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Early Spring See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shôchiku Eiga See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Connections

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

Soundtracks

Kâtibim
, A version of (uncredited)
Turkish folk song
[Can be heard during war buddies reunion in the background]
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Work takes its toll
24 May 2005 | by tasgalSee all my reviews

The cover of the DVD I rented gave away too much of the plot. I'll try to avoid doing this. The characters in "Early Spring" talk explicitly about jobs and families, so I'll take that as a cue to do the same.

"Early Spring" feels rough -- mostly drab scenery, stark conflicts, and direct behavior. The movie begins with a long stretch of static scene-setting, and then abruptly becomes event-rich. I won't detail the plot, but will say that it and the characters and their actions are completely believable. Nothing is exaggerated or simplified to artificially enhance the drama or make a point.

Many of the characters are recent arrivals to the middle class, thanks to jobs on lower rungs of corporate offices. Business and personal lives are realistically interconnected, which is rare in movies. (Exceptions that come to mind are "The Sopranos," "The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz," and movies by the Dardenne brothers.) Even when there is a collegial work atmosphere, the jobs can be punishing. The people don't fail to appreciate the benefits, and memories of poverty are fresh enough to keep them from romanticizing the alternatives. Orwell wrote that Dickens pointed to problems of capitalism, but offered no systematic program to fix them, and that the latter may be depth rather than shallowness. You could say the same about Ozu. "Early Spring" ends, not unlike Chekhov's "The Duel" and "Uncle Vanya," with resignation to circumstances, but also rebuilding and a sense of the redemptive value of work.


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