“Tôkyô kazoku” (original title)
Runtime: 146 min
Genre : Drama
Movie Release : 19 January 2013 (Japan)
Director: Yôji Yamada
Writers: Yôji Yamada (screenplay), Emiko Hiramatsu (screenplay)
Stars: Isao Hashizume, Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Masahiko Nishimura
An old married couple Shukichi Hirayama and Tomiko live on a small island in the Inland Sea. They go to Tokyo. The couple have 3 children. The eldest son Koichi runs a hospital. The first daughter Shigeko runs a beauty salon. The second son Shuji works in stage art. The families ask the parents to take a rest in Tokyo, but the parents do not like staying in Tokyo. One day, Tomiko visits Shuji’s apartment. There, Tomiko is introduced to Shuji’s fiancé Noriko, but Tomiko collapses at Koichi’s house.
This film is a 2013 color re-make of Yasujiro Ozu’s 1953 “Tokyo Story,” that was voted the #1 film by directors in the 2012 Sight and Sound poll. The plot lines and characters are very similar with some distinct differences; even some lines of dialogue are the same or very similar. The biggest difference is that while Noriko in the 1953 film is the daughter-in-law of the elderly couple, whose son was killed in WWII, Noriko in the 2013 film is the future daughter-in-law engaged to the elderly second couple’s son (much more developed in this film, not in a flattering way). In addition, the incomparable Setsuko Hara, known as the Japanese Garbo, played Noriko in the 1953 film and brought to the role a transcendent luminosity of compassion and wisdom. Secondly, while Ozu had a distinct cinematographic style of usually having the camera directly in front of the characters while they spoke, we see this much less frequently in the 2013 film. These are just a few of the differences. Overall, it is an interesting re-make, but Ozu’s “Tokyo Story” is still one of the greatest films ever made.
Tokyo Family Trailer