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Muddy River (1981)

Doro no kawa (original title)
In post-War Japan, a boy from a noodle store-owning family befriends a neighboring boy living in poverty.


Kôhei Oguri


Teru Miyamoto (novel), Takako Shigemori
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 15 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »




Credited cast:
Takahiro Tamura ... Shinpei Itakura
Mariko Kaga ... Shoko Matsumoto, Kiichi and Ginko's mother
Nobutaka Asahara Nobutaka Asahara ... Nobuo Itakura
Makiko Shibata Makiko Shibata ... Ginko Matsumoto
Minoru Sakurai Minoru Sakurai ... Kiichi Matsumoto
Yumiko Fujita Yumiko Fujita ... Sadako Itakura, Nobuo's mother
Gannosuke Ashiya Gannosuke Ashiya ... Shinoda, the horse cart man
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Reiko Hatsune Reiko Hatsune ... Tabacco shop woman
Keizô Kanie Keizô Kanie ... Policeman
Yoshitaka Nishiyama Yoshitaka Nishiyama ... Warehouse guard
Taiji Tonoyama ... Man on festival boat
Masako Yagi Masako Yagi ... Shinpei's first wife


Two boys, whose parents ply their trade by the mouth of a muddy river in Osaka, become close friends. The two families' "businesses" are in fact dining and prostitution. When Nobou, the restauranteur's son, loses his pocket money during the Tenjin Festival, Kiichi, the prostitute's boy, invites him home, and he learns the truth. Written by L.H. Wong <as9401k56@ntuvax.ntu.ac.sg>

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Did You Know?


Japan's official submission to the 1982's Oscar in the Best Foreign Language Film category. See more »

User Reviews

Great film and about its DVD release
9 January 2016 | by fa7999See all my reviews

To answer the questions from the two reviewers above, Japan released a DVD box set of all major works by Oguri, including Muddy River and His masterpiece Sting of death. I saw Muddy River in the early 80s and connected with this film deeply. Exceptional film and one of a handful of best movies about children. To the great list about child movie a reviewer mentioned above, I will add Ponette and Shoeshine t the list. Or even maybe Ivan's childhood. Ponette has probably the best child performance ever captured on the silver screen.

Oguri only made a handful of films in his career but undoubtedly he has left a strong impression on many cinephiles. I highly recommend that you guys check out his other films.

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Release Date:

30 January 1981 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Muddy River See more »

Filming Locations:

Kyoto, Japan See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Kimura Productions See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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