Equinox Flower

1958 [JAPANESE]

Action / Comedy / Drama

11
Rotten Tomatoes Critics - Certified Fresh 88% · 8 reviews
Rotten Tomatoes Audience - Upright 87% · 500 ratings
IMDb Rating 7.8/10 10 4897 4.9K

Director

Top cast

720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
1.05 GB
968*720
Japanese 2.0
NR
Subtitles us  
24 fps
1 hr 57 min
Seeds 2
1.96 GB
1440*1072
Japanese 2.0
NR
Subtitles us  
24 fps
1 hr 57 min
Seeds 8

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by SnakesOnAnAfricanPlain 9 / 10

Equinox Flower (1958)

Equinox Flower was Ozu's first color film. He was reluctant to do it, but he shouldn't have been. He handles the addition so well. The colors really do join every scene together. Equinox Flower deals with one father's hypocritical view of love and marriage. It begins at a wedding where Hirayama makes a speech to his friend's daughter. He says how lucky they are to be able to choose their own partner. He does this in front of his wife in a very awkward moment. Hirayama and Kiyoko's relationship is interesting. They make their marriage work, even if there wasn't love there at first. They work together and never feel that they are trapped in this relationship. Despite his new world views during this wedding, once his daughter announces she wishes to marry a man, Hirayama is opposed. His hypocritical views are the cause of much comedy. He is also forced to face his prejudices as he finds a daughter of an old friend who has run away to be with her struggling musician boyfriend. Hirayama is supportive of everyone but his own daughter. Again though, with Ozu's eloquence, Hirayama is not a villain. It is understandable that he has different views concerning his own daughter. A group of men sit around and discuss the differences between sons and daughters. The growth of the whole family is well plotted and emotional. It's another wonderful and gentle deconstruction of Japanese family values.

Reviewed by tomgillespie2002 9 / 10

Another delight from the master

Businessman Wataru (Shin Saburi) is continually approached by his friends and co-workers for advice and help, especially when it concerns potential marriages for their daughters. He is approached by Mikami (Ozu regular Chisu Ryu) who is concerned that his daughter has gone off with a man from a lesser family with a low-paid job. He agrees to meet her and try to talk some sense into her. One day at work, he is approached by a man named Maniguchi (Keiji Sada) who asks for his daughter's hand in marriage. Wataru is horrified that his daughter Setsuko (Ineko Arima) has been seeing this man without his knowledge, and insists that marrying him is not the right decision.

Japanese master is again on familiar ground with this gentle drama. Again, he explores themes of family, and change in a post-war Japanese society. Wataru is not a traditionalist by nature - he is generally quite open-minded, but only when it comes to his friend's families. When he has tea with one of Setsuko's friends, she explains how her mother is obsessed with finding her a match with a man with a decent job and background. Wataru is agreed that her mother is stuck in her ways. It becomes clear that Wataru is simply a father who cannot let go of his daughter. It's a sentiment that anyone, even those without children, can relate to.

Ozu does make a point of showing the increasing differences in attitudes between the generations. The parents are children of war. Wataru and his wife Kiyoko (Kinuyo Tanaka) discuss memories of being in the bomb shelters. Ozu doesn't want us to see the elders as narrow-minded and old-fashioned, but instead as people who grew up with danger and death all around them, and clearly hold protection and security in high regard, and for good reason. However, Ozu does show the women of Equinox Flower as the stronger sex, and the biggest advocates for change. Kiyoko tries to change Wataru's mind, but realises that this is a decision he will make on his own.

The film is full of Ozu's usual traits, including the usual gorgeous cinematography - and this is his first to be shot in colour. His camera is ever-still, watching from low angles, usually through doorways. He is offering his audience a window into these people's lives, and allows them to give their naturalistic courtesies as they would if no-one was watching. It is a delight watching a true master at work, and it's amazing how he finds fresh and fascinating ways to explore similar themes. I've never seen any of his films that haven't been anything less than brilliant, and I'm still to see his widely celebrated Tokyo Story (1953). An absolute delight.

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Reviewed by TheLittleSongbird 9 / 10

Charming flower

'Equinox Flower' is such a lovely title for a film, isn't it? Have noticed this with all of Yasujiro Ozu's oeuvre, all of his films having very poetic and appealing titles that makes one want to see the film in question straightaway. On top of that, Ozu was a mighty fine director. One of the best of his generation and a big influence in cinema, while his best films are reasons why foreign films appeal to me so much. His style is a distinctive one that may take patience to get into but it does fascinate.

While not quite one of Ozu's primary masterpieces, 'Equinox Flower' struck me upon watching as a great film and towards the top end when ranking his filmography. It has everything that makes his work so appealing and demonstrative enough of what made him such a great director. The subject and themes are familiar ones for Ozu, being a director that used them a lot in his work, but generally this didn't strike me as a problem because he was near-unparallelled in how he explored them. Hardly any other director really made the subject of family as human, intimate or as emotionally investable as Ozu. 'Equinox Flower' is just one of the examples at how good he was at this.

It takes a bit of time to get going and to the point (even for a director that took a deliberate approach to his stories unfolding the film does feel a little too slow and very slight to begin with), but really do do your best to stick with it. Because it really does become a lot more compelling and throughout it is vintage Ozu all the way.

Ozu's direction as usual is meticulous in its detail and subtle. The first of his films to be shot in colour, 'Equinox Flower' is one of his most beautiful-looking later films, the usual camera techniques are there and as clever and intimate as ever but with the extra benefit of being in lush colour. The music is again nostalgic and sometimes hypnotic, with a playful touch at times that fits the film's tone ideally.

Like a vast majority of his other films, 'Equinox Flower' is beautifully written. There is nothing cold about it, it's poetic in flow, very thoughtful and with a nice playful yet still gentle humour and emotion without being sentimental. The story once it gets going is so human and charming, it is Ozu at perhaps his most playful but the melancholic edge is genuinely poignant and attention to character development and their relationships are remarkably rich in detail and relatable. The acting is typically great, particularly Shin Saburi and Ineka Arima. Both suitably determined but in an understated way.

To conclude, great. 9/10

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