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Tokyo Story (1953)

Tôkyô monogatari (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 13 March 1972 (USA)
Trailer
4:16 | Trailer
An old couple visit their children and grandchildren in the city, but receive little attention.

Director:

Yasujirô Ozu

Writers:

Kôgo Noda (scenario), Yasujirô Ozu (scenario)
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Top Rated Movies #182 | 3 wins. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Chishû Ryû ... Shukichi Hirayama
Chieko Higashiyama ... Tomi Hirayama
Setsuko Hara ... Noriko Hirayama
Haruko Sugimura ... Shige Kaneko
Sô Yamamura ... Koichi Hirayama
Kuniko Miyake ... Fumiko Hirayama - his wife
Kyôko Kagawa ... Kyôko Hirayama
Eijirô Tôno ... Sanpei Numata
Nobuo Nakamura ... Kurazo Kaneko
Shirô Ôsaka Shirô Ôsaka ... Keizo Hirayama
Hisao Toake Hisao Toake ... Osamu Hattori
Teruko Nagaoka ... Yone Hattori
Mutsuko Sakura Mutsuko Sakura ... Oden-ya no onna
Toyo Takahashi ... Rinka no saikun (as Toyoko Takahashi)
Tôru Abe Tôru Abe ... Tetsudou-shokuin
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Storyline

Elderly couple Shukishi and Tomi Hirayama live in the small coastal village of Onomichi, Japan with their youngest daughter, schoolteacher Kyoko Hirayama. Their other three surviving adult children, who they have not seen in quite some time, live either in Tokyo or Osaka. As such, Shukishi and Tomi make the unilateral decision to have an extended visit in Tokyo with their children, pediatrician Koichi Hirayama and beautician Shige Kaneko, and their respective families (which includes two grandchildren). In transit, they make an unexpected stop in Osaka and stay with their other son, Keiso Hirayama. All of their children treat the visit more as an obligation than a want, each trying to figure out what to do with their parents while they continue on with their own daily lives. At one point, they even decide to ship their parents off to an inexpensive resort at Atami Hot Springs rather than spend time with them. The only offspring who makes a concerted effort on this trip is Noriko ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In the daily lives of ordinary people, a sense of deep affection wells up. See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese | English

Release Date:

13 March 1972 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Tokyo Story See more »

Filming Locations:

Osaka, Japan See more »

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Box Office

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,405
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shochiku See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The original negative was lost soon after the film was completed, due to a fire at the vault of the lab in Yokohama city. The film had to be released using prints made from a dupe protective negative. See more »

Goofs

At timer mark 1:45:46, when the children are visiting their mother at home and leave the room to talk with the father in an adjoining room, just as they sit on the floor, you see the shadow of the boom-mic just drop into the scene and back out again, just over the sons head on the top right of the screen. This shadow is well into the frame against the edge of what appears to be a bookshelf and should not be considered a masking mistake of the projectionist. See more »

Quotes

Shukichi Hirayama: But if I had known things would come to this, I'd have been kinder to her while she was alive.
See more »

Connections

Follows Late Spring (1949) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The excuses we make to justify our neglect of others
14 May 2002 | by KFLSee all my reviews

An appreciation of this movie may demand some understanding of Japanese culture. The Japanese are rather reserved, and were even more reserved back in the early 1950's, when this film is set. No embracing, even of parents, children, siblings; no dramatic histrionics; even a death scene in this movie is much quieter than a Westerner might expect.

Consequently I can't really blame several reviewers here for calling this movie boring and slow-paced. But it is not at all slow-paced from a different cultural perspective. It just depends on what you're used to.

If you do take the time to watch and try to understand it, you'll find an engrossing analysis of the dynamic of a middle-class family, the rift that grows up between generations, and of the many excuses we find ourselves making to justify our neglect for others, even those dearest to us. These themes are universal, but are couched in a postwar Japanese idiom, and so probably less accessible to the average Western viewer.

I have wondered awhile about a speech at the end by Noriko, the widowed daughter-in-law, in which she denies that she's such a good person (though her actions in the movie indicate otherwise). I'm still not sure I understand her motives in saying this. For the most part, however, this movie will not leave you puzzled, but it may leave you a bit wiser, and a bit more reluctant to make those excuses.


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