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Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) DVD Region 2

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Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

The film that took Japan by storm is now on DVD. From Takashi Yamazaki, the visionary director behind Juvenille and the sci-fi hit, Returner, comes Always - Sunset On Third Street. No film in 2005 had a higher profile in Japan than Always, which was reflected when it scooped twelve out of a possible thirteen awards at the Japanese Academy Awards in March 2006. The film uses a combination of elaborately constructed sets and cutting edge CGI work to recreate Tokyo in the 1950s. It is a heartfelt, nostalgic look back at a time when the country was changing and developing, soon to experience an economic boom that would forever alter Japanese culture.
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Technical Information

Product Title: Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) 三丁目之黃昏 (通常版) (英文字幕) (日本版) 三丁目之黄昏 (通常版) (英文字幕) (日本版) ALWAYS 三丁目の夕日 Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)
Artist Name(s): Yakushimaru Hiroko | Tsutsumi Shinichi | Koyuki | Yoshioka Hidetaka | Horikita Maki | Miura Tomokazu | Motai Masako | Nukumizu Youichi | Suga Kenta | Masuoka Toru | Kanbe Hiroshi | Ogi Shigemitsu | Iida Motosuke | Magy | satou naoki | Tyuji Miyajima | Kozo Shibazaki 藥師丸博子 | 堤真一 | 小雪 | 吉岡秀隆 | 堀北真希 | 三浦友和 | Motai Masako | 溫水洋一 | 須賀健太 | 益岡徹 | 神戶浩 | 小木茂光 | 飯田基祐 | Magy | satou naoki | 宮島龍治 | 柴崎幸三 药师丸博子 | 堤真一 | 小雪 | 吉冈秀隆 | 堀北真希 | 三浦友和 | Motai Masako | 温水洋一 | 须贺健太 | Masuoka Toru | 神户浩 | 小木茂光 | Iida Motosuke | Magy | satou naoki | 宫岛龙治 | 柴崎幸三 薬師丸ひろ子 | 堤真一 | 小雪 | 吉岡秀隆 | 堀北真希 | 三浦友和 | もたいまさこ | 温水洋一 | 須賀健太 | 益岡徹 | 神戸浩 | 小木茂光 | 飯田基祐 | マギー | 佐藤直樹 | 宮島竜治 | 柴崎幸三 Yakushimaru Hiroko | Tsutsumi Shinichi | Koyuki | Yoshioka Hidetaka | Horikita Maki | Miura Tomokazu | Motai Masako | Nukumizu Youichi | Suga Kenta | Masuoka Toru | Kanbe Hiroshi | Ogi Shigemitsu | Iida Motosuke | Magy | satou naoki | Tyuji Miyajima | Kozo Shibazaki
Director: Yamazaki Takashi 山崎貴 山崎贵 山崎貴 Yamazaki Takashi
Release Date: 2006-06-09
Publisher Product Code: VPBT-15325
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Japanese
Country of Origin: Japan
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: 2 - Japan, Europe, South Africa, Greenland and the Middle East (including Egypt) What is it?
Duration: 133 (mins)
Other Information: DVD
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1004144088

Product Information

タイトル:ALWAYS 三丁目の夕日
出演:吉岡秀隆/堤真一/小雪/堀北真希/もたいまさこ/三浦友和/薬師丸ひろ子/須賀健太/小清水一揮/マギー/温水洋一/神戸浩/飯田基祐/小木茂光/益岡徹/小日向文世
監督:西岸良平(原作)/山崎貴(監督)/山崎貴(VFX)/山崎貴(脚本)/古沢良太(脚本)/佐藤直紀(音楽)/ROBOT(制作プロダクション)/阿部秀司(エグゼクティブ・プロデューサー)/奥田誠治(エグゼクティブ・プロデューサー)/安藤親広(プロデューサー)

携帯もパソコンもTVもなかったのにどうしてあんなに楽しかったのだろう...。昭和33年、東京タワーが完成するこの年、東京下町の夕日町三丁目には、人情味あふれる住民たちがにぎやかに暮らしていました。そんなある日のこと、鈴木則文(堤 真一)と妻・トモエ(薬師丸ひろ子)、息子・一平が暮らす自動車修理工場・鈴木オートに、集団就職で上京した六子(堀北真希)がやってきます。ところが、立派な会社を期待していたらしい六子はどこか、がっかりした様子......。一方、何かと則文と反発しあう駄菓子屋の店主で、しがない小説家の茶川竜之介(吉岡秀隆)。一杯飲み屋のおかみ・ヒロミ(小雪)に恋心を抱く茶川は、ひょんなことから、彼女の元に連れられてきた身寄りのない少年・淳之介の世話をすることに......。さて、六子が加わった鈴木家には何が起こるのでしょうか?さらに茶川と淳之介の奇妙な同居生活の行方は? 夕日町三丁目の人々には、どんな未来が待っているのでしょうか?
2005年度 映画賞総なめ!感動を呼びリピーター続出!2600000人が泣いた!!昭和33年の東京を舞台に空前のスケールで贈る、夢と希望と感動の大ヒットエンタテインメント!!第29回日本アカデミー賞最優秀賞12部門受賞!総合的な作品力が高く評価され2005年度の賞レースを席捲した。監督は「ジュブナイル」「リターナー」で新たなVFXのジャンルの開拓に成功した山崎貴。綿密な時代考証、広大なる豪華セット、最先端のVFX技術をもとに見事に昭和33年御日本を再現!

映像特典:映画館泣き笑い音声//山崎監督バージョン/【音声特典】オーディオコメンタリー2種/【静止画特典】キャスト・スタッフプロフィール/劇場予告/TVスポット

テクニカル・インフォメーション
:カラー
画面:Cinemascope-squeeze(16:9LB)
言語/音声:日本語:ドルビーデジタルステレオ

その他の情報
製作年:2005
備考:1枚組
映像特典収録
日本小売価格:¥3800

Additional Information may be provided by the manufacturer, supplier, or a third party, and may be in its original language

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Awards

This film has won 13 award(s) and received 3 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

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Professional Review of "Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)"

View Professional Review:
January 17, 2008

Tokyo - 1958. Thirteen years have passed since the Second World War took its toll on Japan. Rikidozan is a national hero and the proud nation is once again getting back on its feet in an attempt to embrace a new dawn. The residents of San-chome (Third Street) go about their daily lives, whilst around them an incomplete Tokyo Tower looms and the sounds of passing trams and bustling commuters filters through the calm air.

Chagawa Ryunosuke (Yoshioka Hidetaka) is a struggling writer and former finalist for the Akutagawa Literary Prize. The owner of a general store, he makes ends meet by selling candies and comics, while the locals laugh and mock him for clinging onto his glory days and making a living out writing stories for children. The only thing he even thinks of holding dear is a bar girl named Hiromi (Koyuki), who appears to be nothing more than a player with a flair for pretty persuasion. Pouncing at the perfect opportunity, she entrusts a young boy in her care called Junnosuke (Suga Kenta) to Chagawa, who is hopelessly infatuated with the woman. Taking the boy in, he soon begins to regret his decision. They have no real ties to one another and that he's hardly a fatherly figure.

Over the road lives Chagawa's old friend, Mr. Suzuki (Tsutsumi Shinichi), owner of a small, family-run business called Suzuki Auto. His wife Tomoe (Yakushimaru Hiroko) and son Ippei (Koshimizu Kazuki) look after the house, while he works hard to the bone in order to provide a steady income. Soon enough he receives a response from an advertisement he placed seeking experienced mechanics. Mutsuko (Horikita Maki) is a country girl who has come to Tokyo with the hopes of working as a secretary for “Suzuki Motors”, but when she meets Mr. Suzuki, her hopes are shattered as he drives her to San-chome and welcomes her to her new home. She settles in and adopts the nickname "Roku-chan", but her comfort is soon compromised when certain truths come out about her situation.

The lives of those living in San-chome are closely examined, as several of its residents try to overcome the difficulties that they face everyday. Hope always shines on Third Street and for some a single sunset can echo a thousand sentiments.

For what it's worth, Always - Sunset on Third Street was winner of twelve out of thirteen nominations at Japan's most recent Academy Awards. It was a box-office smash, breaking the two billion yen barrier when it hit cinema screens last year. Putting those awards behind us for a moment, the most important thing is knowing whether or not we can trust such immense praise. Well, as much as I often find myself disagreeing with the Academies every year, it's nice to know that I can still be pleasantly surprised and find a film that is just about fully deserving of its golden prizes.

Yamazaki Takashi made his feature debut in 2000 with Juvenile and closely followed it up with the science fiction blockbuster Returner. His stint as assistant director on the anime series Heat Guy J turned his attention to Saigan Ryohei's 1973 manga San-chome no Yuhi in 2004. Using his already established FX skills, he proceeded to bring to life a piece of history that only our elders can recall today.

Nostalgia always gets the better of us and Yamazaki provides plenty in his latest outing. There are many nuances littered throughout Always, with nods to signs of the times: television becoming a popular medium in which the director captures a small part of a country coming together and rejoicing as one; the Tokyo Tower, standing as a representation of hope and dreams for a nation building itself up from ashes; rockabilly music blaring through radios as American influences slowly filter in; Coca-Cola, the new-fangled drinking craze, and the luxury of cream puffs; and the modernisation of a family unit as it embraces technical wizardry such as washing machines and fridge freezers. This was a period when everything was held sacred and attitudes toward social change were more positive than ever. But above all, Always is about surviving through the worst of times and making way for new horizons. The Japanese spirit prevails once more as Yamazaki takes us on pleasant journey into the past.

Yamazaki Takashi is perhaps one of Japan's most pioneering visual effects masters. He bought us transforming jets, four years before a Transformers film was green-lit. While Masahiro Shinoda beat him to the punch in terms of computer rendered cityscapes with his final - and ridiculously overlooked - film, Spy Sorge, in 2003, Yamazaki does wonders in recreating another part of Japan, in a time when drastic changes were taking place. Though it doesn't sound like it, its far more epic and subtle than Returner ever was. Not only does Yamazaki create a huge, digital backdrop for his story-telling, but he also places most of his environments on a sound stage, instantly bringing to mind Francis Ford Coppola's One from the Heart, which drew the audience into an entirely fabricated Las Vegas. In fact, judging Always as a whole, I'm left to wonder if this film can indeed be considered the Japanese answer to Coppola's 1982 feature. After all, it centres its story on comparable situations, focusing on several individuals who go through many trials and ultimately find their lot in life. And, much like Coppola's film, the environment complements the overall story as a character in itself.

Despite Yamazaki doing absolute wonders with visual trickery, he never allows the film to drown in it. In fact, after the first ten minutes of showing off to the audience with impossible camera shots and unnecessary, though impressive, CG - such as a lizard eating a moth - he settles in to the film nicely. Always doesn't hinge itself on the sole fact that what we're looking at is a lovingly recreated Tokyo of the 50s, but instead relies firmly on an exceedingly talented and diverse cast. To be perfectly honest, there's very little in the way of actual plot, merely connections between characters that are formed during several intervals. Yamazaki takes his time to fully develop these primary characters in all kinds of wonderful ways, managing to show a real sense of progression for each character, from cartoonish showdowns to pleasant and melodic accompaniments, and, of course, a few bouts of melodrama which at times becomes a little too signposted for its own good. Nevertheless, even with chirpy and sometimes manipulative scoring, Always remains a tightly focused and surprisingly upbeat piece of work, which shows that Yamazaki has grown considerably as a director since the eye-candylicious, but vapid Returner of 2002.

A/V
Always is presented with an anamorphic 2.35:1 aspect ratio. The film opens with a nod to Tohoscope, reflecting the classic age from which this film takes place. Yamazaki clearly wishes to encapsulate that style of filmmaking, with a wide lens, set to capture as much of San-chome as possible. As such, he uses a few other bits of visual trickery to make the film feel pleasantly suited. A soft filter is applied, as well as a small amount of diffusion which almost gives the film a fairytale quality. With these inherent qualities, the overall transfer holds up well and I don't imagine that, should it arrive in HD, it'll look much better than it currently does. Colours are pleasing and appear to be deliberately muted, while the plentiful CG blends in better than it probably would had this been filmed in any other way. The only thing that mars the transfer is a noticeable amount of Edge Enhancement.

For sound we get a few nice options, with Japanese Dolby Digital 2.0, 5.1 Surround and 5.1 DTS. I chose to go with the latter track and while it's not a remarkable step up from the 5.1 Surround option, it is neatly mastered. Naoki Sato's uplifting score receives a solid treatment and the main standout throughout are the street sounds that manage to immerse the viewer into the little town. Dialogue poses no problems, sticking mainly to the front speakers, while the rears pick up subtle ambient effects.

Optional English subtitles are included and provide very nice translations, especially considering that some of the dialogue deals with different dialects. Things like this have been well catered for, providing the viewer with a good understanding of different regions, not to mention a couple of fun pokes.

Extras
Not a bad collection for a standard release, but as usual there's very little for those importing to get excited over. With two audio commentaries it's a shame that we don't have the luxury of subtitles for extra features. In Japanese only are cast and crew biographies and a collection of trailers, consisting of a theatrical trailer, two teasers and five TV spots.

Overall
Always - Sunset on Third Street is the most pleasing blockbuster (a little odd to say, given it's far removed from the usual summer fare) feature to surface within the past year. Yamazaki Takashi's film is most certainly a labour of love, and a sincere one at that - his best to date I might add. On occasion, it does try a little too hard to melodramatise us, but I can't be too cynical toward it because of that. With some magnificent performances from both young and old generations and well-rounded, likeable characters, Always is an often poignant and uplifting affair that perfectly captures an innocent moment in time, when hope and spirits were raised for the common good, in a land once torn apart by the ravages of war.

By Kevin Gilvear - DVD Times.

February 28, 2006

This professional review refers to Always - Sunset on Third Street (Deluxe Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)
Call it the Titanic Syndrome, but whenever word comes out of a film sweeping film awards the assumption tends to be that it has done so by playing to the lowest possible common denominator, by glossing things up to a polished sheen and hoping by doing so to distract the audience from the fact that they're being shamelessly manipulated. And, honestly, Yamazaki Takashi's Always - winner of twelve of thirteen total awards offered in Japan's version of the Oscars, and the winner of the Audience Choice award at this year's New York Asian Film Festival - does exactly that. A wildly nostalgic film with a palpable ache for simpler days gone by, Always reaches for every possible emotional button, flips every switch, practically begs you to follow where Yamazaki wants to lead. Subtle it is not, but it is blessed with strong enough characters and enough grace points that you are more than willing to forgive the occasional excess in favor of the larger whole. It is such a polished, poised and consistent piece of work that it is hard to believe that it is from the same man who made the occasionally entertaining, but wildly inconsistent Returner.

Set in 1958 Tokyo, Always is at least as much about capturing a soft focused memory of a past time and age as it is about narrative. The film aims to capture a city and a nation on the cusp of major change, with the under-construction Tokyo Tower standing as the primary image for the push to modernization. This is Tokyo just emerging from the shadow of the war, Japan moving from its old ways into the new and modern era with both the excitements of change and the faint tinges of loss as the old ways pass. This is an era where entire neighborhoods would turn out when someone nearby bought a television set, where a fridge was a strange and wondrous thing, where Coca Cola was first appearing on the market and rockabilly filled the airwaves. An era filled with people trying to put the memory of the past behind them - an era, in fact, filled with children who have no direct knowledge of their violent near past - and filled with hope and optimism for a better future, a future that seems to be just on the cusp of arriving.

Representing this era, these feelings, are the residents of one small Tokyo neighborhood. We start with Mutsuko, the country girl newly arrived in the big city to take a job. That job turns out, unexpectedly, to be as a mechanic in a small auto body shop, a job that Mutsuko is woefully unqualified for, much to the chagrin of her temperamental boss Suzuki. Mutsuko becomes a surrogate member of the Suzuki house, joining the patriarch, his wife and nine-year-old son Ippei, who grills his mother daily on when their new television set will arrive. Across the street from the Suzuki's lives Chagawa, a struggling writer who has failed to find any success writing 'literature'. Instead, he is forced to eke out a living writing low paying children's adventure stories for a monthly magazine, while also running a run down candy shop inherited from a dead aunt. Thanks to some drunken boasting aimed at impressing newly arrived dancer turned barmaid Hiromi, Chagawa becomes a surrogate father to Junnosuke, an abandoned and unwanted boy who has been turned out by his mother - an old acquaintance of Hiromi's. The boy is viewed as nothing more than a nuisance until it turns out that he is a great fan of Chagawa's adventure stories and the two slowly develop an unspoken but deeply felt bond. Also in the mix are the trend-tracking, tobacco shop-owning granny and the local doctor, still struggling to overcome the death of his wife and daughter in the war time fire bombing of Tokyo.

Though Yamazaki certainly crosses the line between sweet and cloying from time to time - Mutsuko is too often given nothing to do but play the spunky teen girl. A closing sequence between Chagawa and Junnosuke is so flagrantly staged to tug on the heartstrings 'til they threaten to snap that it is barely excusable. The excesses are easy to forgive because Always is so obviously heartfelt, the emotions are big and broad but they are also clearly genuinely felt by all involved. The film does a remarkable job of taking seemingly stock characters and gradually developing them into full blooded, three-dimensional people. You become willing to go where they lead because you genuinely care about these people and their lives, which is no small feat for a film that runs well over two hours with very little plot to speak of. Always plays like memory, little stories and vignettes unspooling with all of the nasty bits edited out, with only the highlights remaining. It is by turns funny, sincere, heartrending and wistful; a film that values family, wherever you may find it, above all else and changes emotional gears easily and often. Much of the early press focused largely on Yamazaki's incredibly detailed recreation of historic Tokyo - he was offered the job initially thanks to his extensive special effects background - and while that technical aspect of the film is truly remarkable, Yamazaki has clearly learned from the mistakes of Returner. Here he keeps the focus squarely on the characters, rather than the effects.

The recently released Japanese DVD is excellent, as you would expect for such a high-profile release. The transfer is anamorphic and very strong, audio comes in 2.0, 5.1 and DTS varieties, and the English subtitles are excellent - even capturing some of the quirks of dialect when Mutsuko is freshly arrived in Tokyo. In all a very strong presentation for a film that reminds that aiming for mass appeal is not necessarily a bad thing.

by Todd Brown - Twitchfilm.net

This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.

Customer Review of "Always - Sunset on Third Street (Normal Edition) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)"

Average Customer Rating for this Edition: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (2)
Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9.7 out of 10 (3)

Peter Rootham-Smith
See all my reviews


November 2, 2008

100% cinema Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
This is a film I'm happy to recommend to everyone. It is a winner on three fronts.

Firstly the characters are nicely drawn and acted - the drama ranges from comedy to pathos. Once cares and understands for those depicted in this heart-warming film.

Secondly a period in time is captured here. When fridges were new and marvellous (but putting the man delivering ice out of business.) When TV was a treat to watch. When coca cola was a suspicious invader into the diet.

Lastly there are moments of pure transcendental cinema - the ending particularly speaks so powerfully but does not use words.
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Kevin Kennedy
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October 19, 2008

1 people found this review helpful

Step into a bygone era Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
"Always -- Sunset on Third Street" is a sentimental look back at one modest neighborhood in 1950s Tokyo in which average folks seek to build new lives and find fresh dreams in a world, as Japan stirs to life after the destruction of World War II. We meet a young man striving to build an auto repair business and provide for his family, a girl from the country seeking a better life in the big city, a struggling writer scraping a meagre living from selling serialized children's stories and the young boy who gives him hope. Fine acting, moving stories, and a startlingly vivid milieu bring this fine film to life. Yes, this is history through rose-colored glasses, but if you aren't made teary-eyed at least a couple times before movie's end, then you have a harder heart than I do. Very highly recommended for the whole family.
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Best Review
Gaijin Samurai
See all my reviews


June 17, 2006

This customer review refers to Always - Sunset on Third Street (Deluxe Edition) (Japan Version - English Subtitles)
2 people found this review helpful

ALWAYS worth watching. Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
This is a really great film, definately deserving of the many awards it has earned.
In the shadow of a Tokyo Tower still under construction, ALWAYS is a touching tale about the residents of Third Street in the late 1950's. As the movie progresses, Yamazaki Takashi does an excellent job of drawning you into the community as you meet and get to know the denizens of this little corner of Tokyo.
While the movie is filled with CG effects, they are mainly used to to give each scene atmosphere and help to give you a sense of actually being a part of the community during that era. The acting is very strong, with notable performances by Horikita Maki and the younger actors Suga Kenta and Koshimizu Masaya. Worth watching again and again.
The Deluxe Edition comes loaded with goodies, including a second disc with almost 3 hours of Special Features as well as book about the film. Knowledge of Japanese is highly recommended for the additional content.
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