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Late Spring

Late Spring (1949)


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Average Rating: N/A
Critic Reviews: 3
Fresh: 3 | Rotten: 0



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Average Rating: 4.3/5
User Ratings: 4,543

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Movie Info

Veteran Japanese writer/director Yasujiro Ozu's second postwar production was 1949's Late Spring or Banshun. Chisu Ryu plays another of Ozu's realistic middle-class types, this time a widower with a marriageable daughter. Not wishing to see the girl resign herself to spinsterhood, Ryu pretends that he himself is about to be married. The game plan is to convince the daughter that they'll be no room for her at home, thus forcing her to seek comfort and joy elsewhere. What makes this homey little


Art House & International, Drama

Kazuo Hirotsu, Kgo Noda

Nov 30, 1994

Criterion Collection

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All Critics (22) | Top Critics (5) | Fresh (19) | Rotten (0) | DVD (8)

One of the best two or three films Ozu ever made.

January 20, 2006 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Ozu's characters don't seek ecstasy, not because they are afraid of it but because they are brave enough to accept compromise.

May 9, 2005 Full Review Source: New York Times
New York Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Yasujiro Ozu's 1949 film inaugurated his majestic late period: it's here that he decisively renounces melodrama (and, indeed, most surface action of any kind) and lets his camera settle into the still, long-take contemplation.

January 1, 2000 Full Review Source: Chicago Reader
Chicago Reader
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Ozu's low camera position helps the audience relate to his characters, and his almost-always static shots portray the sturdy demeanor of his characters.

June 1, 2012 Full Review Source:

Ozu trains his trademarked fixed camera on the deceptively simple story of a father and daughter and finds in it nothing short of the whole wide world.

May 1, 2012 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

impermanence... forms the film's true subject - and it is Ozu's ambivalence towards it, as though he wants both to board the train, and to stay on the platform, that ultimately gives Late Spring its bittersweet resonance.

August 23, 2010 Full Review Source: Little White Lies
Little White Lies

Haiku-like in its title, its interest in the undramatic silences between scenes, and its enfolding of human behaviour within nature, Late Spring offers tenderness in the place of melodrama and patient truth in the place of sudden revelation.

December 2, 2009 Full Review Source: Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)
Vue Weekly (Edmonton, Canada)

An early indicator of Ozu's late-career greatness, his remarkably subtle family drama Late Spring finds him at his expressive peak.

August 4, 2009 Full Review Source:

Late Spring is, along with Tokyo Story, Ozu's greatest work.

July 8, 2006 Full Review Source: Combustible Celluloid
Combustible Celluloid

One of the director's favorites.

June 25, 2006 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Ozu's camera is observational, rather than intrusive; even when we get something akin to a close-up, it never feels like it's invading the character's space.

June 3, 2006 Full Review Source: Q Network Film Desk
Q Network Film Desk

the work of a master

June 2, 2006 Full Review Source:

Exquisite ... What little plot there is in Late Spring is adorned by Ozu's Zen-like meditation on objects, surroundings and the Japanese concept of mono no aware -- the ineffable resignation to the reality of life as things are.

June 2, 2006 Full Review Source: Boulder Weekly

welcome respite from mindless, dispassionate cinema

June 1, 2006 Full Review Source: Old School Reviews
Old School Reviews

Late Spring exemplifies Ozu's rich, mature style, an apparent stylelessness of patient, lifelike rhythms, unobtrusive camerawork, and credibly subtle performances. [DVD]

May 18, 2006
Groucho Reviews

With no one looking but the camera, Hara's face registers anger, jealousy and humiliation, all in the space of a few seconds.

April 9, 2004 Full Review Source: eye WEEKLY

Audience Reviews for Late Spring

Another fantastic example of Ozu's work. As usual, very restrianed and very simple. Ozu examines family relationships and the social beliefs of Japan at the time. The struggles of women and the worries of fathers are all played out. Late Spring focuses on Ryu once again playing a single father, and his daughter Noriko. Many of Ozu's films deal with the effects of a marriage on a family. Here, Noriko does not want to get married. She is content with her life with her father. She enjoys looking after her father and worries about he will be able to cope without her. As it progresses Ryu must make the choice of letting his daughter go. Even if he must trick her to set her free. The great thing about Ozu is that he doesn't tell us what to think, a story is laid out in front of us with each characters emotions open to interpretation. A very moving ending, but one that doesn't try and make us cry. Slow and boring to some, Ozu is a director who has no need to try and impress his audience. Ironically, this is the most impressive thing about him.
September 21, 2011

Super Reviewer

although ozu typically starts slow, this film begins slower than most of his. however, by the time it picks up, it becomes one of ozu's most emotionally powerful films. in particular japanese fashion noriko's father doesnt display any emotion until completely alone, and then it hits hard, but hara gave a phenomenal and emotionally charged performance. i never get tired of seeing ryu or hara in an ozu film, and ozu's camera shots are typically strong in this film. the bike riding scene, the scene on the road after the play, and the discussion towards the end just before the wedding are all phenomenal, and as is usual for ozu, we get a wonderful portrait of japanese culture and family life.
March 15, 2011
danny d

Super Reviewer

Late Spring is by far my favourite of Ozu's Noriko trilogy, although they are all brilliant. The films captures a certain acceptance that post war Japan was going through in the late 40's early 50's, a change in traditions but not necessarily a change in values. Ozu doesn't preach though, it is what it is - and what it is is a masterpiece made by one of the greatest directors of all time. Setsuko Hara is beautiful and plays Noriko perfectly, she says so much with just a slight change of expression, it's easy to see why Ozu cast her so often. A perfect film.
February 14, 2011

Super Reviewer

What I liked about this movie, is the gradual attachment that grows between you and the characters. I've got this with all the Ozu's I've seen so far: in the beginning it's very neutral, but when he gets to the core of the relationships, I find it deeply moving.
This movie explores the bond between a father and his daughter. It's about making sacrifices, or being prepared to make sacrifices for each other. Not something you see very often anymore in today's society,
January 10, 2011

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Late Spring (Banshun) (DE)
  • Late Spring (UK)
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