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80 minutes · 2013
Like Passing Fancy two years earlier, Yasujiro Ozu's penultimate silent film (1935) is a glum Depression-era tale with Takeshi Sakamoto as a poor laborer and single parent (he even has the same given name as in the earlier film). Homeless, he cares for two little boys (the older one, hammy Tokkan Kozo, also appeared in 1932's I Was Born, But . . . ) and befriends an equally desperate single mother, stealing for her after her little girl contracts dysentery. Despite the characteristic visual distinction, this lacks the passion and urgency of Ozu's best work, and the moralistic conclusion feels strained.

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