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Good Morning (The Criterion Collection) (1962)

Keiji Sada , Yoshiko Kuga , Yasujir˘ Ozu  |  Unrated |  DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)

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Good Morning (The Criterion Collection) + An Autumn Afternoon (The Criterion Collection) + Eclipse Series 3: Late Ozu (Early Spring / Tokyo Twilight / Equinox Flower / Late Autumn / The End of Summer) (The Criterion Collection)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Keiji Sada, Yoshiko Kuga, Chishű Ryű, Kuniko Miyake, Haruko Sugimura
  • Directors: Yasujir˘ Ozu
  • Writers: Yasujir˘ Ozu, K˘go Noda
  • Producers: Shizuo Yamanouchi
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: Japanese (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Criterion
  • DVD Release Date: August 22, 2000
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0780023307
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,146 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Good Morning (The Criterion Collection)" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

By the time he made Good Morning in 1959, Yasujiro Ozu had completely eliminated camera movement from his uniquely simple but elegant directorial style. He chose instead to emphasize static but meticulously purposeful compositions that rarely, if ever, wavered from their recognizable low-angle perspective. In Good Morning, this observational approach is put to sublime use to establish setting (a late-'50s Tokyo suburb) and to view the world through the eyes of the film's central characters—-two young brothers who take a mutual vow of silence to protest their parents' refusal to buy a TV set. Their father claims that television will create "a million idiots," while their mother is angered by the boys' neglect of schoolwork in favor of watching sumo wrestling on a neighbor's TV.

In Ozu's hands, this sublimely simple conflict inspires a comedic exploration of Japan at the dawn of its electronic age, when consumerism and materialism are in vogue, salesmen solicit their wares in constant door-to-door visits, and even the purchase of a washing machine can prompt neighbors into a frenzy of gossipy speculation. Funniest of all are the conspiratorial brothers, who play an amusing variation of "pull my finger" (proving that even great directors can indulge a fart joke if they choose), and employ their silent strategy with the stubbornness that only children can get away with. Through it all, Ozu develops a handful of intermingling themes of love, communication, goodwill, and the changing of societal traditions. Utterly simple on the surface, Good Morning reveals its complexity in careful proportion, with the affectionate humanity that was Ozu's greatest gift. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

Ozu's hilarious Technicolor re-working of his silent I Was Born, But. . ., Good Morning (Ohayo) is the story of two young boys in suburban Tokyo who take a vow of silence after their parents refuse to buy them a television set. Shot from the perspective of the petulant brothers, Good Morning is an enchantingly satirical portrait of family life that gives rise to gags about romance, gossip, and the consumerism of modern Japan.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, funny but look below the surface! October 3, 2000
Format:DVD
This is a study in layers of meaning, layers so fine they are almost transparent. On the surface this is a comedy of misunderstandings, stereotypes, and intergenerational conflict. Below that this is a photographer's film. I think the color is intentional - Ozu used agfa stock which had a slightly unreal quality to it. Each shot is carefully composed, and once you're into it, quite beautiful. Below that, the running comment is how language is as important to life as passing gas. Even deeper, life is changing quickly - the economy is changing right under the parents' noses - beatniks, salesmen, American electronics, unemployment, forced retirement. Pretty heavy stuff for a scatalogical comedy. Finally, optomistically even, Ozu suggests that for love, language is relatively unimportant, and action is the real substance of character - be it helping a friend start over, smiling while being a stern father, or choosing to ride the train with a potential mate, even if you can't afford to marry. A comedy that is high art - with fart jokes - how can you go wrong?
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Delightful Sitcom Bears Ozu's Depth and Then Some July 2, 2005
Format:DVD
Flatulence seems to be an odd way of lending a framework to a film, but leave it to filmmaking master Yasujiro Ozu to use it as a metaphor for the meaninglessness of "small talk" between people who cannot be candid with one another. The title of this 1959 movie, "Ohay˘ (Good Morning)", is indeed the salutation but also from Ozu's perspective, a symbolic expression of how the Japanese avoid confrontation and put a strong value on etiquette. One of Ozu's late period color films, this is a very cute comedy which on the surface, seems like an extended episode of "Leave It to Beaver" especially in exhibiting the speedy Americanization of Japan since WWII. Even the color palette seems to evoke the muted McCarthy-era colors of the Universal comedies release around the same time. What remains consistent are Ozu's signature visual compositions - the use of the hillside to place the horizon in the middle of the frame, the use of silhouettes against the hillside, the movement of figures darting between the identical homes.

Set in a shoebox-tight housing community in Tokyo, the plot seamlessly interweaves the activities of five households - four of the more traditional variety and the fifth, a young beatnik couple who has the prized possession of the neighborhood, a TV set, which draws all the children in like clockwork after school. In the meantime, the housewives discover their association dues are missing and in "Peyton Place"-style, rumors swirl that the culprit is the woman who just bought a washing machine.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Slight Ozu, not "second-rate" Ozu March 14, 2000
Format:VHS Tape
With all due respect to the previous reviewer, I do not belive that Ozu has ever made a "second-rate" film. Good Morning is cheerful and slight, but it is a charming comedy of manners, and is a refreshing change of style for a director much more well recognized for his domestic serious drams on meditations on life and the transience of human existence. I will agree that it quite does not pack the punch of "I was Born but..", but is is very charming and entertaining in its own way. I am glad that Ozu was able to leave us with the beautiful swan-song "Autumn Afternoon" shot in lovely color, as a fond remembrance of his genius.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent Ozu film! June 30, 2002
By A Customer
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful story and Criterion is to be commended on their release of this film. The color of the actual film, in contrast to the photos on the package, is excellent. Having watched another version (Japanese only) of the same film I must say that the difference in color is astonishing. Criterion has found a much better print. Now where are the Criterion editions of Tokyo Story(and other Ozu masterpieces) and Ugetsu (Mizoguchi-not Ozu, of course)?
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A small film about big things... November 10, 2001
Format:DVD
Set mainly in four homes in a small 1950's Japanese village, Yasujiro Ozu's Good Morning (Ohayo) is an exceptionally wise comedy. It appears outwardly gentle, but hides a great deal of political content. Sure, there are some jokes about bodily functions here, but much of the film's humor comes from the pretense that makes a fart joke a faux pas, not from the flatulence itself. That seems to be Ozu's game. He takes down our defenses by showing us characters that are exceptionally mundane working-class folks, then uses their petty concerns to make broader social commentary. That he seems to think their concerns are petty is a suspicion that occasionally arises, but generally he seems to legitimately care about the characters on display. He takes the camera literally down to the level of a seated character, and his camera looks at them head-on while they speak. He seems to suggest that he's interested in examining these normally unexamined characters, but his stylistic choices could easily be interpreted as condescension. After all, that same focused attention almost feels like a study of these "common" people. That he feels compelled to study them so intently suggests he might not quite relate to or understand them.
The temptation certainly exists to just read Good Morning as a slice of life tale that shows the foibles of the people in the town, but there may be a bit more to it than that. Although Isamu, the small child who follows his brother throughout the film is adorable, the goal of their protest (they want a television) seems less than noble. Also, Isamu's mimicry appears to be endearing, but isn't it also a tad creepy that he's being led into a strike that he doesn't quite understand? This ambiguity seems to extend to the other characters.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars It really is a lovely day
Ozu is a Japanese marvel and this,Good Morning(1959),is one of his later films,shot in colour,depicting the social comedy of the importance of the giving or with-holding of small... Read more
Published 2 days ago by technoguy
4.0 out of 5 stars With correct English subtitles, it would get 5 stars.
Perhaps it's because about the only other Japanese films I have ever seen were Akira Kurosawa's Dreams, and Miyazaki's animated movies (all amazing quality made fantasy stories)... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Jeff N
3.0 out of 5 stars For Ozu Completists Only
I absolutely love Ozu's movies, and this is the eleventh one I've seen (so far). I regard him as my all-time favorite director in any language. Read more
Published 13 months ago by R. Prokop
5.0 out of 5 stars WONDERFUL OZU CLASSIC.
I love the films of Yasujiro Ozu, and this is a classic of the first order. Shot in gorgeous color, the story is simple yet moving in that classic Ozu way. Highly recommended.
Published 16 months ago by William Ennis
3.0 out of 5 stars NOT ONE OF HIS BEST
Ozu became a famous director by making films which portrayed mundane life in Japan in such a way that they were interesting and memorable. Read more
Published 17 months ago by The Curmudgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars Another triumph of Ozu
One of Japanese master Yasujiro Ozu's latter movies (and among his few color films). In a Japanese suburb in the late 1950s, two Japanese tykes (one about 10 years old, the other... Read more
Published 24 months ago by Andres C. Salama
4.0 out of 5 stars The Comedy of Small Talk
Ozu presents another deeply personal film about the ordinariness of ordinary life; with beautifully precise cinematography and acting. Read more
Published on September 6, 2011 by no name
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming and vibrant
This movie is a gem. Excellent color, multi-faceted, and transcendent from it's humble origins. It is a simple, day in the life story that I saw once and immediately knew I had to... Read more
Published on January 20, 2011 by AnotherBryan
5.0 out of 5 stars Ozu is AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!
If you cannot grasp subtle concepts... if you need a film to lead you around by the nose... if you need lots of moving shots and tricky camera angles... Read more
Published on December 15, 2010 by Christopher Barrett
1.0 out of 5 stars good morning
I did not care for the style & time period of cinematography. too bland characterization, but well done for how portrayed & presented. Read more
Published on May 2, 2010 by Brendan D. Havel
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