Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB
Original title: Dekigokoro
Japan, 1933. Shôchiku Eiga. Story by Yasujiro Ozu, adaptation by Tadao Ikeda. Cinematography by Hideo Shigehara, Shojiro Sugimoto. Production Design by Yonekazu Wakita. Film Editing by Kazuo Ishikawa.
Charming early Ozu film, made well after sound arrived in Japan but by a filmmaker who held on to the valuable properties of the by-now outdated form (he would also resist colour for a long time in later years). It essentially surrounds the tale of a single father struggling to raise his rambunctious young son after the death of his wife, which becomes difficult when dad meets a young woman he would like to marry and his son becomes jealous of the affair. The young lady’s reticence to being romanced by this rough-and-tumble fellow is no small hurdle to overcome either, neither is the discouraging input of friends and neighbours, but the delights of the small moments are for you to discover in this little gem. For fans of Ozu’s later masterpieces, it is interesting to see the same themes that would be developed to such emotional heights in films like Late Spring and Late Autumn being treated with such lightness here.