On 23rd May the BFI will be adding two more titles to its ongoing strand, The Ozu Collection with the release of Late Autumn (1960) and An Autumn Afternoon (1962). Both will be presented in Dual Format Editions (a Blu-ray and a DVD disc in one box), with each main feature complemented by an early Ozu film that has never been made available in the UK before.
Late Autumn (Akibiyori) & A Mother Should be Loved (Haha O Kowazuya)
When college nostalgia inspires a group of middle-aged businessmen to match-make for the widow of a friend – played with measured dignity by Setsuko Hara (Tokyo Story) – and her daughter, they have no idea of the strife their careless interference will cause. Late Autumn's examination of familial upheaval moves effortlessly from comedy to pathos and is amongst the finest of Ozu's post-war films.
Also included here is surviving version of Ozu's moving silent drama A Mother Should be Loved. Missing both first and last reels, the incomplete film nevertheless achieves a dramatic intensity in its portrayal of a young man struggling to deal with a disturbing family secret. It is presented with an alternative, newly commissioned, score by composer Ed Hughes.
Late Afternoon will be presented in both standard definition and high definition versions, while A Mother Should Be Loved will be presented in standard definition only. Both will have new and improved English subtitles. A Mother Should be Loved will also have an optional score by Ed Hughes, commissioned exclusively for the BFI.
Also included will be an Illustrated booklet with a new sleevenote essay by Asian cinema expert Alexander Jacoby.
An Autumn Afternoon (Sanma No Aji) & A Hen in the Wind (Kaze No Naka No Mendori)
Yasujiro Ozu's elegiac final film An Autumn Afternoon charts the inevitable eclipse of older generations by irreverent youth. Revisiting the story of his earlier masterpiece Late Spring (1949), Ozu once again casts Chishu Ryu in the role of a concerned father, Hirayama, to unmarried daughter Michiko. Harangued on all sides to marry off Michiko, Hirayama reluctantly prepares to bid his old life farewell. A cast of tragi-comic characters weaves seamlessly through this gently satirical portrayal of life's inevitable, endless cycle.
Ozu's rarely seen post-war melodrama A Hen in the Wind is also included here. In a Japan recently devastated by World War II a devoted, near-destitute mother turns to prostitution to pay medical bills when her son falls dangerously ill.
An Autumn Afternoon will be presented in both standard definition and high definition versions, A Hen in the Wind will be presented in standard definition only. Both will have new and improved English subtitles.
Also included will be an Illustrated booklet with a new sleevenote essay by Kyoko Hirano and Jonathan
Late Autumn and An Autumn Afternoon will be release on Dual Format (DVD and Blu-ray) by the BFI on 23rd May 2011 at the RRP of £19.99 each.