Rent Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family (1953)

4.0 of 5 from 262 ratings
2h 16min
Rent Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family (aka Tôkyô monogatari / Todake no kyôdai) Online DVD & Blu-ray Rental
  • General info
  • Available formats
Synopsis:
A constant fixture in critics' polls, Yasujiro Ozu's most enduring masterpiece, 'Tokyo Story', is a beautifully nuanced exploration of filial duty, expectation and regret. From the simple tale of an elderly husband and wife's visit to Tokyo to see their grown-up children, Ozu draws a compelling contrast between the measured dignity of age and the hurried insensitivity of a younger generation.
Actors:
, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Sachiko Mitani, , Mitsuhiro Môri, Junko Anan,
Directors:
Producers:
Takeshi Yamamoto
Writers:
Kôgo Noda, Yasujirô Ozu, Tadao Ikeda
Aka:
Tôkyô monogatari / Todake no kyôdai
Studio:
BFI Video
Genres:
Children & Family, Classics, Drama
Collections:
12 Films of Christmas Past, A Brief History of Old Age on Screen: Part 1, Getting to Know: Tilda Swinton, The Instant Expert's Guide to Wes Anderson, The Instant Expert's Guide to Yasujiro Ozu, Top 10 Award Winners at the London Film Festival, Top 10 Bookshop Scenes, Top 10 European Remakes, Top 10 Movie Grandmas For Mother's Day
Countries:
Japan
BBFC:
Release Date:
06/12/2004
Run Time:
236 minutes
Languages:
Japanese Dolby Digital 1.0 Mono, Japanese LPCM Mono
Subtitles:
English
DVD Regions:
Region 2
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
Colour:
B & W
Bonus:
  • Ozu's incisive satire, 'Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family' (1940), also included here, explores similar themes. After the death of her husband, Mrs Toda and her youngest daughter receive a frosty welcome from extended family
BBFC:
Release Date:
19/07/2010
Run Time:
136 minutes
Languages:
Japanese LPCM Mono
Subtitles:
English
Formats:
Pal
Aspect Ratio:
Full Screen 1.33:1 / 4:3
Colour:
B & W
BLU-RAY Regions:
B

More like Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family

Reviews (2) of Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family

Slow essay drama exploring post-war Japanese culture is not, for me, 'the best film of all time' - Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family review by BW

Spoiler Alert
09/02/2018

Toyko Story is one of the most critically acclaimed films. In a 2012 poll of film directors conducted by Sight & Sound it was voted the best film of all time. I find it difficult to understand such high opinions of the movie. I quite like this essay-type film which explores its subject matter with clarity, focus and a thoughtful, inquiring approach. Ostensibly the central theme of the piece is of grown-up children having little time for their parents. In the increasingly urban and westernised Japan of the 1950s, the siblings in this film have moved to Toyko and a metropolitan life that contrasts quite sharply with the traditional Japanese culture of their parents.

The brief review accompanying the copy I watched called the film a 'finely nuanced' drama but I see it very differently. The difficulties between the elderly parents and their grown-up children are repeatedly foregrounded and emphasised. It's not a slight thing glimpsed in gestures and tone of phrase but the basic narrative focus of the script. Similarly, the characters come across as quite plain and one-dimensional. There is acting here but it is of the Brechtian kind, as you might expect of a film-as-essay where ideas and arguments are being methodically explored by the drama. Other admirers of Toyko Story comment on the objective approach that the direction and camera takes - steady and unobtrusive, aspiring to a cinema of non-attachment in the Buddhist sense. I wonder if the polite and formulaic Japanese customs, manners and tatami mat gatherings often portrayed by the drama may amplify this idea of a similarly detached film-making approach.

Toyko Story seemed over-long but it does come alive in the final third of the movie. In scenes towards the end some of the characters uncover a depth and passion hitherto unseen. At the end, Toyko Story comes across as a film concerned with deep existential matters along with the cultural debates it either hints at (the Westernisation of Japanese culture) or boldly covers throughout (the difference between generations). It is a film that asks questions without providing shallow answers or polemics. I am a viewer who enjoys slow, thoughtful films and can rate black-and-white classics too but ultimately Toyko Story took too long for me to come alive and generate interest.

4 out of 10 members found this review helpful.

A must watch. - Tokyo Story / Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family review by RM

Spoiler Alert
06/12/2021

A timeless film, which depicts real life in any society. The moral being, as said in the film twice, one cannot look after one's parents after they are dead.

2 out of 2 members found this review helpful.

Unlimited films sent to your door, starting at £15.99 a month.