Ginko seems to be living the good life: She's the respectable owner of a neighborhood drug store in Tokyo, and her daughter Koharu is about to get married to a doctor. However, Koharu's ... 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.
Set in post-World War II Japan, midwife Nobuko is resolved to move on as she stands at the grave of her son Koji who died, alongside thousands of others, when the Americans dropped an ... See full summary »
The 50th film in Tora-san series to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the series. The adult Mitsuo, Tora-san's nephew, who runs into Izumi, his first love, whom he had once promised to ... See full summary »
In this sequel to the first It's A Wonderful Family, the characters who are still based on those in Tokyo Family (which itself was based on Tokyo Story), are a couple of years older with ... See full summary »
Tetsuo is a young man living in Tokyo, who falls in love with a deaf-mute factory girl. He has always felt jealous of his college- educated brother, but ultimately wins both the girl and ... See full summary »
Kyoko is a university librarian and she also helps her parents with their drycleaning company. She is involved with a childhood friend from the neighborhood, Kota. He is the son of the ... See full summary »
Depicting the period in and around World War II in Japan, 'Our Mother' depicts the madness and inhumanity of what happens when a right-wing militaristic government takes over and drives a nation to annihilation. The tragedy not only strikes a nation as a whole, but comes to the doorsteps of a woman who is left alone and desperate with everyone for whom she cares and knows victimized by conservatism, jingoism, nationalism and arrogance. There is no respite.Written by
Yoji Yamada's Kabei — Our Mother begins in the late 1930s after Japan had initiated what later became known as The Second Sino-Japanese War. The film begins with Kayo Nogami's husband, a respected intellectual who teaches at the University, writing an article protesting the war with China. Seeing this as a betrayal, the Japanese government brutally arrests him in front of his family for a "thought crime." Yamada is best known for directing a trilogy of Samurai films, especially The Twilight Samurai, which was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film and won an unprecedented 12 Japanese Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Screenplay (written by Yamada). His later films remind me of Akira Kurosawa, not just for their Samurai themes, but for their sensitivity and deep humanity, and Kabei is no exception. Born in 1931, Yamada would have been about the age of the youngest daughter Teryu, who narrates the story as an older woman looking back. After "Tobei" is imprisoned, his wife Kayo, played by the beautiful Sayuri Yoshinaga, struggles to provide for her family, including two daughters aged around six and twelve I would guess. This exquisitely filmed movie follows the mother's heroic efforts, with only a few sympathetic supporters, to survive in a completely hostile environment. Kabei has been called "dark" for the harsh treatment Kayo and her daughters receive, but Yamada's tender depiction of the family and Yoshinaga's astonishing performance lift it from tragedy to triumph. Usually, a younger actor progressively plays an older one, but in this film Yoshinaga, around 65 when she made Kabei, starts out playing a young mother!
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