Early Summer | Weizenherbst
Noriko is a “late bloomer”. The 28-year-old is happily ensconced in her parents’ house, along with her brother, his wife and their two children. She has no thoughts of getting married, but her relatives think she should. And so does her boss. He introduces her to an old friend of his – as a “good match”. Noriko shows no interest, but the mere rumour of a possible marriage triggers discord behind her back among her relatives about her putative “choice” … Unlike canaries in their cages on the veranda, humans tend to leave home at some point. The film is a melancholy portrayal of that necessary process of family separation, with the elisions typical of Ozu and an atmosphere marked by the stripped down interiors. In 1993, Wim Wenders said “for me, Yasujiro Ozu is the filmmaker who led the 20th century art form to its most beautiful and inimitable and unrepeatable form”. Noriko is played by Ozu’s favourite actress, Setsuko Hara, who passed away in September 2015 at the age of 95. – World premiere of the digitally restored version in 4K DCP.
by Yasujirō Ozu
with Setsuko Hara, Chishū Ryū, Chikage Awashima, Kuniko Miyake
Japan 1951 125’

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