Backyard Movie August 21st
Hi All!

This month’s movie selections are some of my favorite films from Japanese director Yasujiro Ozu. I often talk bout Ozu's craftsmanship and how great his influence is on me as an artist, but rarely do I get the opportunity to share his work. Ozu’s films are so special to me as they have a simplistic elegance in portraying the everyday with an intangible feeling of transcendent contemplation. They are quiet and peaceful but stay with you long after you leave them. Most of his films share common stories/characters and scenarios, or in some cases are direct remakes of his previous works. As Prince said: there is Joy in Repetition. I recommended reading the senses of cinema link below if you want to learn more about his career.

TIME: Sat, August 21st @ 8:47pm.
THEME: Late August (the films of Yasujiro Ozu)

Taken from:

The films of Yasujiro Ozu examine the basic struggles that we all face in life: the cycles of birth and death, the transition from childhood to adulthood, and the tension between tradition and modernity. Their titles often emphasize the changing of seasons, a symbolic backdrop for the evolving transitions of human experience. Seen together, Ozu’s oeuvre amounts to one of the most profound visions of family life in the history of cinema.

WHAT: I'll have popcorn and drink options but please bring your favorite snacks or drinks.
WHERE: 3315 NE 63rd

RULES: Vote below and scroll down to see trailers for each film. Program will be served with a short, cartoon and period specific trailers.
• 1st: 3 points
• 2nd: 2 points
• 3rd: 1 points
• No way: neg 1 point
*** Biker's votes are worth double points (including neg) ***
Here is his grave which I was fortunate enough to visit in 2012. The Chinese character “Mu” inscribed on the stone roughly translates to “nothingness” or “void”. I left him a can of Suntory ハイボール (Hiball) and Peace cigarettes (I think his favorite?):
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Late Spring, 1948
Good Morning, 1959
Early Summer, 1951
Late Autumn, 1960
The Only Son, 1936
I Was Born, But..., 1932
There Was a Father, 1942
An Autumn Afternoon, 1962
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Late Spring (晩春, Banshun), 1948 -- One of the most powerful of Yasujiro Ozu’s family portraits, Late Spring tells the story of a widowed father who feels compelled to marry off his beloved only daughter. Eminent Ozu players Chishu Ryu and Setsuko Hara command this poignant tale of love and loss in postwar Japan, which remains as potent today as ever—and a strong justification for its maker’s inclusion in the pantheon of cinema’s greatest directors.
Good Morning (お早よう, Ohayō), 1959 -- A lighthearted take on director Yasujiro Ozu’s perennial theme of the challenges of inter­generational relationships, Good Morning tells the story of two young boys who stop speaking in protest after their parents refuse to buy a television set. Ozu weaves a wealth of subtle gags through a family portrait as rich as those of his dramatic films, mocking the foibles of the adult world through the eyes of his child protagonists. Shot in stunning color and set in a suburb of Tokyo where housewives gossip about the neighbors’ new washing machine and unemployed husbands look for work as door-to-door salesmen, this charming comedy refashions Ozu’s own silent classic I Was Born, But . . . to gently satirize consumerism in postwar Japan.
Early Summer (麦秋, Bakushū), 1951 -- The Mamiya family is seeking a husband for their daughter, Noriko, but she has ideas of her own. Played by the extraordinary Setsuko Hara, Noriko impulsively chooses her childhood friend, at once fulfilling her family's desires while tearing them apart. A seemingly simple story, Early Summer is one of Yasujiro Ozu's most complex works—a nuanced examination of life's changes across three generations. The Criterion Collection is proud to present one of the director's most enduring classics.
Late Autumn (秋日和, Akibiyori , lit. "A Calm Autumn Day"), 1960 -- The great actress and Ozu regular Setsuko Hara plays a mother gently trying to persuade her daughter to marry in this glowing portrait of family love and conflict—a reworking of Ozu's 1949 masterpiece Late Spring.
The Only Son (一人息子, Hitori musuko), 1936 -- Yasujiro Ozu’s first talkie, the uncommonly poignant The Only Son is among the Japanese director’s greatest works. In its simple story about a good-natured mother who gives up everything to ensure her son’s education and future, Ozu touches on universal themes of sacrifice, family, love, and disappointment. Spanning many years, The Only Son is a family portrait in miniature, shot and edited with its maker’s customary exquisite control.
I Was Born, But... (Japanese: 大人の見る絵本 生れてはみたけれど Otona no miru ehon - Umarete wa mita keredo "An Adult's Picture Book View — I Was Born, But..."), 1932 -- One of Ozu's most popular films, I Was Born, But . . . is a blithe portrait of the financial and psychological toils of one family, as told from the rascally point of view of a couple of stubborn little boys. For two brothers, the daily struggles of bullies and mean teachers is nothing next to the mortification they feel when they realize their good-natured father’s low-rung social status. Reworked decades later as Ozu's Technicolor comedy Good Morning, it's a poignant evocation of the tumult of childhood, as well as a showcase for Ozu's expertly timed comedy editing.SHARE
There Was a Father (父ありき), 1942 -- Yasujiro Ozu’s frequent leading man Chishu Ryu is riveting as Shuhei, a widowed high school teacher who finds that the more he tries to do what is best for his son’s future, the more they are separated. Though primarily a delicately wrought story of parental love, There Was a Father offers themes of sacrifice that were deemed appropriately patriotic by Japanese censors at the time of its release during World War II, making it a uniquely political film in Ozu’s body of work.
An Autumn Afternoon (秋刀魚の味, Sanma no aji, "The Taste of sanma"), 1962 -- The last film by Yasujiro Ozu was also his final masterpiece, a gently heartbreaking story about a man’s dignifed resignation to life’s shifting currents and society’s modernization. Though the widower Shuhei (frequent Ozu leading man Chishu Ryu) has been living comfortably for years with his grown daughter, a series of events leads him to accept and encourage her marriage and departure from their home. As elegantly composed and achingly tender as any of the Japanese master’s films, An Autumn Afternoon is one of cinema’s fondest farewells.
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