Friday, June 8, 2007

June 8th Log

1932, Yasujiro Ozu, Japan
1st Viewing, DVD

I FINALLY got a chance to see this wonderful film!!! I Was Born, But… is often cited among master Japanese filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu’s most beloved works (be it of pre or post WW11). It’s a lovely film. One that begins light-hearted and subtly grows darker as it progresses. It’s a witty comedy, but the film also emerges as an insightful and transcendent tragedy in its incredibly in-depth awareness of social and human behaviors. As in most of Ozu’s silents, the visual style is far more expressive then that of his post-war work. I Was Born, But… perfectly defines the perspective of the characters, notably the two young boys. Ozu always got great performances from child actors and this film is essentially expressed through the two boys. In the opening scene, we see the boys watching their father as a great hero helping a car get out of a mud pit. As the film gradually moves forward their perspective changes such as when they see their father acting like a jokester in some old home movies. Here the film delves darker as the children’s innocence become a overwhelming awareness of social and adult contradictions. I Was Born, But… marked one of Ozu’s earliest successes as a filmmaker, both financially and critically, as the film was a box office success and also won the Kinema Jumpo poll as best Japanese film of the year. Ozu himself loosely remade the film with the more-lighthearted and inferior (though still quite good) 1959 Technicolor film Good Morning (Ohayo).

>>> More on Record of a I Was Born, But... @ A2P Cinema's Yasujiro Ozu website HERE

>>> Here is a clip from I Was Born, But...:


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