Banshun (Late Spring). 1949. Japan. Directed by Yasujiro Ozu. In Japanese; English subtitles. 108 min.
Screenplay by Ozu, Kogo Noda, based on the novel by Kazuo Hirotsu. With Setsuko Hara, Chishu Ryu, Haruko Sugimura, Yumeji Tsukioka. Often cited as the film that initiated the great run of creativity that was Yasujiro Ozu’s late period, this 1949 feature was also his first (of six) with the actress Setsuko Hara, who appears here in the role she was most associated with: the dutiful daughter who remains unmarried in order to care for her aging father (Chishu Ryu). When her aunt (Haruko Sugimura) tries to arrange a match for her with a handsome student, she resists, until her father tells her he hopes to remarry himself. From this simple plotting grows a profound, deeply moving drama about the conflict of family and self, tradition and change, past and future. This will be the first American screening of a major new digital restoration of the film, which was carried out by Cineric in New York City under the sponsorship of the Shochiku Company.