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Late Spring (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray]


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Late Spring (The Criterion Collection) [Blu-ray] + Tokyo Story (Criterion Collection) (Blu-ray + DVD)
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Product Details

  • Actors: Chishu Ryu, Setsuko Hara, Yumeji Tsukioka, Haruko Sugimura, Hohi Aoki
  • Directors: Yasujiro Ozu
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: Unrated
  • Studio: Criterion Collection
  • DVD Release Date: April 17, 2012
  • Run Time: 108 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B006X96PBU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #175,955 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

One of the most powerful of the family portraits by Yasujiro Ozu (Tokyo Story), Late Spring tells the story of a widowed father who feels compelled to marry off his beloved only daughter. Eminent Ozu players Chishu Ryu (There Was a Father) and Setsuko Hara (Late Autumn) command this poignant tale of love and loss in postwar Japan, which remains as potent today as ever and as strong a justification for its maker's inclusion in the pantheon of cinema's greatest directors.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 41 customer reviews
Much has been said of Ozu's style in technical terms - low angle shots, sparse camera movement.
Suzanne
Of this film, the Cleveland Cinematheque said, "[it is] one of the best films made by Yasujiro Ozu, which makes it one of the best films ever made by anyone."
Robert Beveridge
The year is 1949, and Noriko and her father live a happy, quiet life in rural Japan where she attends tea ceremonies and he is a professor.
Kona

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Michael Thorner on October 2, 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The extras on this disc are fabulous. TOKYO-GA, in particular, is fantastic. It's fascinating to see what Chishu Ryu looked like in his old age, and a real eye-opener to learn that he was almost the same age as Setsuko Hara when they were making pictures together, considering he was most often playing her father. Criterion has done a wonderful job with the bonus features and package design, as per usual. I would have given it a 5 star rating, but for one issue. My biggest complaint (and unfortunately, it IS a complaint), is with the print source quality. One of the reels has a white vertical emulsion scratch running through its entirety; the one with the famous shot of Setsuko Hara riding a bicycle with a male friend, passing a Coca-Cola sign at the side of the road. Only four years after the end of WWII, the Coke sign served as a reminder to the viewer that Japan was still occupied by the Americans, but was also feeling the encroaching influence from capitalistic western culture. Perhaps it was an insurmountable feat for Criterion to have digitally restored this sequence, but I must admit having to endure watching the vertical scratch throughout that entire sequence was quite disappointing and even infuriating, considering it's one of my favourite moments in all of Ozu's films. Having said that, it's an absolute essential for any serious film enthusiast to have this in his or her dvd collection, so I guess I'll just have to grin and bear it. I'm one of those dummies who buys his favourites again and again, like Star Wars fans, so if they improve upon the transfer, I'll probably buy it again. ;-)

Addendum, September 14, 2014: I was feeling passionate when I originally wrote this review. The white emulsion streak is minimal, upon second, third, and fourth viewing. It's fine.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Sam H. on July 16, 2006
Format: DVD
I discovered this film after reading Paul Schrader's book, Transcendental Style in Film. I located an old VHS copy and got totally sucked in by it. I found I loved the father and daughter by the end in a way that was more real than in nearly any other film I'd ever seen. I felt as though I'd been invited into their home and then been treated like an honored guest as a subtle and profound crisis in this family was dealt with.

I bought a Code 3 DVD version from Shochiku Home Video and continued watching it while reading Donald Richie's book on Ozu. But the subtitles seemed to be translated poorly and I could tell that a lot of the subtleties were lost. So I was very pleased when Criterion came out with this version in which much greater care was given to the translations.

In the Shochiku version there are no subtitles at all in the famous scene at the Noh play. But Criterion provides a marvelous translation that adds another layer of depth to the experience. As Noriko looks at her father beside her and then at Mrs. Miwa, whom she thinks is going to marry him, her jealousy and hurt are underscored by the performance of the play. In it a chorus of monks recites in verse a woman's feelings for her lost love. The emotions of the woman in the play, hidden behind the monk's ritualistic performance, parallel the storm of feeling raging just beneath Noriko's subdued expressions.

This is a masterful work and Criterion's translators should be applauded. Also, Richard Peña's commentary points out even more subtleties than I'd read in Richie's book. This DVD is a treasure.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By C. Boerger on June 19, 2006
Format: DVD
Ozu at his best creates achingly beautiful cinematic musings on everyday life. No car chases or explosions, no murders, not a single gun is fired, not so much as a kick in the groin or even a clenched fist. His mileiu is the routine interaction among families, the ostensibly mundane issues that affect us on a daily basis, yet he presents these issues in images so meditative, so beautifully poetic, that they become timeless and profound. As I said, these qualities represent Ozu at his best. And Late Spring is one of his best films.

The story is typical Ozu, a young woman enjoys living with her father while her father very much wants her to get married and leave the house. Not that the father doesn't enjoy having her around, he simply feels that she needs to experience life away from the burden of caring for him, so he is willing to make the sacrifice. Simple enough, right? It's the way Ozu tells the story that makes it heartbreaking and meaningful. He eschews conventional approaches to filmmaking, no dissolves, he goes from scene to scene via simple cuts, he lingers on hallways and doors for seconds after characters have left the frame, or before they arrive, his establishing shots are often establishing montages, a series of shots that show streets, buildings, gardens, parkways, flowers. He retains the small details most filmmakers would leave out, the routine greetings, the "hi, how are you doing?"s, the casual preludes to pertinent conversation that might bog down a conventional film but are perfectly at home in the low key world of Ozu. In effect, his films move at a steady and brooding rhythm, they are like mood pieces, tone poems that never deviate from this quietude. Modern American purveyors of shrill and screechy cinema(P.T. Anderson, Paul Haggis) could take a lesson from Ozu.
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