In this film director Yoji Yamada bows down before his teacher and role model – in his remake of Yasujirō Ozu’s masterpiece TŌKYŌ MONOGATARI, Yamada has made very few departures in order to update the story of ageing couple Shukichi and Tomiko to present day Japan. Once again, the pair decides to leave their quiet lives in the country to pay a visit to their children and grandchildren in Tokyo. Once there, they discover that neither their oldest son, a doctor named Koichi, nor their eldest daughter Shigeko – who runs a beauty parlour – has time for them: both are too busy attending to their everyday concerns. Even the youngest son went his own way. The old couple feel lonely and bewildered in the fast-paced metropolis.
Adopting Ozu’s quiet observations of the family, Yamada’s version loses nothing of its topicality and, even sixty years after the original was filmed, the generation gap is still palpable. In fact, today's young people are struggling to assert themselves in a far more confusing world, and this in a country where the scars of the 2011 tsunami still inform everyday life.
by Yoji Yamada
with Isao Hashizume, Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Satoshi Tsumabuki, Yu Aoi, Masahiko Nishimura