No Regrets For Our Youth (1946)

AKIRA KUROSAWA Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.  Original title:  Waga seishun ni kuinashi Japan, 1946.  Toho Company.  Screenplay by Eijiro Hisaita, Akira Kurosawa, Keiji Matsuzaki.  Cinematography by Asakazu Nakai.  Produced by Keiji Matsuzaki.  Music by Tadashi Hattori.  Production Design by Keiji Kitagawa.  Film Editing by Akira Kurosawa. As Japan prepares to enter the war, academic…

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Tokyo Story

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBBB.  Original title:  Tokyo Monogatari Japan, 1953.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Takeshi Yamamoto.  Music by Takanobu Saito.  Production Design by Tasuo Hamada.  Costume Design by Taizo Saito.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.  Podcast:  My Criterions.   Yasujiro Ozu at the very top of his form, displaying his understanding of…

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Late Spring

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.  Original title:  Banshun Japan, 1949.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Yasujiro Ozu, Kogo Noda, based on the novel Chichi to Musume by Kazuo Hirotsu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Takeshi Yamamoto.  Music by Senji Ito.  Production Design by Tatsuo Hamada.  Costume Design by Bunjiro Suzuki.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   A father greatly wishes for his only…

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Early Spring

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.   Original title:  Soshun Japan, 1956.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Yasujiro Ozu, Kogo Noda.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Shizuo Yamanouchi.  Music by Takanobu Saito.  Production Design by Tatsuo Hamada.  Costume Design by Yuji Nagashima.   Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   A newly hired salary man in 1950s Tokyo becomes quickly disillusioned with both working and married…

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The End Of Summer

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.  Original title:  Kohayagawa-ke no Aki Japan, 1961.  Toho Company, Takarazaka Productions. Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Asakazu Nakai.  Produced by Sanezumi Fujimoto, Masakatsu Kaneko, Tadahiro Teramoto.  Music by Toshiro Mayuzumi.  Production Design by Tomo Shimogawara.  Film Editing by Koichi Iwashita.   Yasujiro Ozu’s second-last film is a loving portrait of a complex family. Gently…

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Tokyo Twilight

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBB.5.  Original title:  Tokyo Boshoku Japan, 1957.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Shizuo Yamanouchi.  Music by Takanobu Saito.  Production Design by Tatsuo Hamada.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   The elder of two daughters (Setsuko Hara) has moved back home with her infant to live with her emotionally distanced…

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An Autumn Afternoon

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5.  Original title:  Sanma No Aji Japan, 1962.  Shochiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Shizuo Yamanouchi.  Music by Takanobu Saito.  Production Design by Minoru Kanekatsu.  Costume Design by Yuji Nagashima.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   Yasujiro Ozu’s final film is a thing of beauty. Gorgeously shot in bright colours, it…

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Early Summer

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBBB.  Original title:  Bakushuu Japan, 1951.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Takeshi Yamamoto.  Music by Senji Ito.  Production Design by Tatsuo Hamada.  Costume Design by Taizo Saito.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   The term “masterpiece” is limited when it comes to picking the best works by Yasujiro Ozu, who…

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Floating Weeds (1959)

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BBBBB.  Original title:  Ukigusa Japan, 1959.  Daiei Studios.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu, based on a screenplay by Tadao Ikeda.  Cinematography by Kazuo Miyagawa.  Produced by Masaichi Nagata.  Music by Takanobu Saito.  Production Design by Hideo Matsuyama.  Film Editing by Toyo Suzuki. This Yasujiro Ozu masterpiece (remade from his own silent film A Story of…

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Good Morning

YASUJIRO OZU Bil’s rating (out of 5): BBBB.5.  Original title:  Ohayo Japan, 1959.  Shôchiku Eiga.  Screenplay by Kogo Noda, Yasujiro Ozu.  Cinematography by Yuharu Atsuta.  Produced by Shizuo Yamanouchi.  Music by Toshiro Mayuzumi.  Production Design by Tatsuo Hamada.  Film Editing by Yoshiyasu Hamamura.   Yasujiro Ozu remakes his delightful silent film I Was Born, But… with equally adorable results. Once again it revolves around the antics…

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The Woman Who Touched Legs (1960)

YASUZO MASUMURA Bil’s rating (out of 5):  BB.5.  Original title:  Ashi ni Sawatta Onna Japan, 1960.  Daiei Studios.  Screenplay by Kon Ichikawa, Natto Wada.  Cinematography by Hiroshi Murai.  Produced by Hiroaki Fujii, Kon Ichikawa, Masaichi Nagata.  Music by Tetsuo Tsukahara.  Production Design by Shigeo Mano.  Film Editing by Tatsuji Nakashizu.   Silly, forgettable remake of the 1952 classic by Japanese master Kon Ichikawa. Machiko Kyô…

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Kwaidan

BBBBB (out of 5) Original title:  Kaidan This haunting film is a collection of ghost stories written by Lafcadio Hearn, a Greek-Irish journalist who moved to Japan and wrote under the name Koizumi Yakumo. Richly directed by Masaki Kobayashi in stunning, full colour, the stories range from the incredibly odd to the absolutely bone-chilling. The first…

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