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Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3

Hisaishi Joe (Actor) | Yoshiyuki Kazuko (Actor) | Hashizume Isao (Actor) | Nishimura Masahiko (Actor)
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Customer Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (1)

YesAsia Editorial Description

To commemorate the 50th anniversary of director Ozu Yasujiro's death, veteran Japanese director Yamada Yoji's 50 years as a director and the 60th anniversary of Tokyo Story, Yamada Yoji pays tribute to the timeless classic with Tokyo Family, his 82nd film. A contemporary update of Tokyo Story, Tokyo Family follows the basic structure of the Ozu film, but updates the original story's pessimistic message, which laments the erosion of familial bond in a rapidly developing postwar Japan, to a modern one that is more optimistic about today's young generation. At the same time, Yamada also recognizes that the fragmentation of the family unit seen in the original film is just as relevant today as it was back in 1953.

The biggest change Yamada and co-writer Hiramatsu Emiko make from Tokyo Story is replacing the family's widowed daughter-in-law with a wayward youngest son and his kind girlfriend, played by Tsumabuki Satoshi (For Love's Sake) and Aoi Yu (Rurouni Kenshin), respectively. The two are joined by a talented cast of actors, including Hashitzume Isao (I Wish), Yoshiyuki Kazuko (Departures), Natsukawa Yui (Still Walking), Nishimura Masahiko (Space Brothers), Nakajima Tomoko (A Taste of Tea) and Hayashiya Shozo. Featuring a score by Hisaishi Joe, Tokyo Family is a touching human drama that isn't just the story of one family; this is everyone's story.

Retired teacher Shukichi (Hashizume Isao) and his wife Tomiko temporarily leave their peaceful island life to visit their children in Tokyo: eldest son Koiichi (Nishimura Masahiko), daughter Shigeko (Nakajima Tomoko) and unreliable youngest son Shoji (Tsumabuki Satoshi). Due to the children's busy schedules, Shukichi and Tomiko are shuffled around Tokyo from home to home. The two are especially worried about Shoji, who has been a burden on the family in the past and now barely scraping by as a stage set designer. Fortunately, Tomiko finds solace when she meets Shoji's kind girlfriend Noriko (Aoi Yu). However, the two parents' hectic schedule eventually takes a toll on them...

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Technical Information

Product Title: Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version) 東京家族 (2013) (DVD) (香港版) 东京家族 (2013) (DVD) (香港版) Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version) Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
Artist Name(s): Hisaishi Joe (Actor) | Yoshiyuki Kazuko (Actor) | Hashizume Isao (Actor) | Nishimura Masahiko (Actor) | Natsukawa Yui (Actor) | Tsumabuki Satoshi (Actor) | Aoi Yu (Actor) | Nakajima Tomoko (Actor) 久石讓 (Actor) | 吉行和子 (Actor) | 橋爪功 (Actor) | 西村雅彥 (Actor) | 夏川結衣 (Actor) | 妻夫木聰 (Actor) | 蒼井優 (Actor) | 中嶋朋子 (Actor) 久石让 (Actor) | 吉行和子 (Actor) | 桥爪功 (Actor) | 西村雅彦 (Actor) | 夏川结衣 (Actor) | 妻夫木聪 (Actor) | 苍井优 (Actor) | 中嶋朋子 (Actor) 久石譲 (Actor) | 吉行和子 (Actor) | ハシヅメイサオ (Actor) | 西村雅彦 (Actor) | 夏川結衣 (Actor) | 妻夫木聡 (Actor) | 蒼井優 (Actor) | 中嶋朋子 (Actor) Hisaishi Joe (Actor) | Yoshiyuki Kazuko (Actor) | Hashizume Isao (Actor) | Nishimura Masahiko (Actor) | Natsukawa Yui (Actor) | Tsumabuki Satoshi (Actor) | Aoi Yu (Actor) | Nakajima Tomoko (Actor)
Director: Yamada Yoji 山田洋次 山田洋次 山田洋次 Yamada Yoji
Release Date: 2013-09-13
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese
Country of Origin: Japan
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Aspect Ratio: 1.78 : 1
Widescreen Anamorphic: Yes
Sound Information: Dolby Digital EX(TM) / THX Surround EX(TM)
Disc Format(s): DVD
Region Code: 3 - South East Asia (including Hong Kong, S. Korea and Taiwan) What is it?
Duration: 147 (mins)
Publisher: Panorama (HK)
Package Weight: 120 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1034049555

Product Information

Director: Yamada Yoji

  An old married couple Shukichi HIRAYAMA (Isao HASHIZUME) and Tomiko (Kazuko YOSHIYUKI) live on a small island in Hiroshima. They go to Tokyo to meet their three children. The eldest son Koichi (Masahiko NISHIMURA) runs a hospital. The first daughter Shigeko (Tomoko NAKAJIMA) runs a beauty salon. The second son Shuji (Satoshi TSUMABUK) works in stage art. The children want their parents to have a good time in Tokyo, but at the same time the children are too busy managing their own business. The old parents feel unwelcome, and their stay inthe city gradually becomes more and more uncomfortable.
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 received 2 award nomination(s). All Award-Winning Asian Films

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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)"

November 28, 2013

This professional review refers to Tokyo Family (2013) (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
There are few films as revered and respected as Ozu Yasujiro's 1953's Tokyo Story regularly selected by critics the world over as one of the very best, a masterful and quietly searching examination of post-war Japanese family values and anxieties. Remaking such a classic isn't something to have been taken lightly, and Tokyo Family is itself somewhat of a special occasion, having been made to mark the 50th anniversary of Ozu's death, and the 60th anniversary of the film's release, as well as the 50th anniversary of acclaimed director Yamada Yoji (The Twilight Samurai), who here takes up the reins of what has been described as an homage or update.

The film stays close to the structure and basic narrative of the original, though with a few alterations, beginning with retired teacher Shukichi (Hashizume Isao, I Wish) and his wife Tomiko (Yoshiyuki Kazuko, Departures) arriving in Tokyo from their peaceful island home to visit their children. Things go wrong from the start, the youngest son Shoji (Tsumabuki Satoshi, For Love's Sake) turning up at the wrong station to meet them, and the situation gradually get worse, the eldest son Koiichi (Nishimura Masahiko, Space Brothers) and daughter Shigeko (Nakajima Tomoko, A Taste of TeaP passing the elderly couple around, no-one wanting to take the time to look after them. Only Shoji's kind-hearted girlfriend Noriko (Aoi Yu, Rurouni Kenshin) seems to care, and does her best to make them comfortable. Sadly, Shukichi and Tomiko start to get worn down by being moved around so much, and the family are brought together when tragedy strikes.

Whether calling it a remake, homage or update, a new version of something so close to cinematic perfection was no doubt a daunting task, though Yamada Yoji was certainly a fitting choice, being himself a master director and having been influenced by Ozu throughout his own career. Though the necessity of a remake of Tokyo Story is obviously debatable, there's no question that Tokyo Family was a personal project for Yamada rather than a cheap cash-in, and that genuine thought and craftsmanship went into its making. Comparisons with the original are inevitable, and are interesting to analyse. Yamada's style, does recall Ozu, showing the same subtle stillness, visual composition and eye for detail, with plenty of scenes of trains and transport being thrown included. The film moves at a similarly patient pace, and though at nearly two and a half hours is slightly longer than the original, it has very much the same feel. Yamada's approach does differ somewhat, chiefly in that the film has far fewer directly positioned shots of the cast talking towards the camera, though this never really detracts from the overall air of intimacy, and the story quietly pulls the viewer in without fuss or manipulation.

There are changes also to the characters, most notably the character of Noriko, who in the original was a widowed daughter in law, here having somewhat less of a connection to the family as Shoji's girlfriend. Shoji himself is another addition, and it's through their characters that Yamada makes the film feel somewhat more optimistic than Ozu ?Shoji is initially seen as being unreliable and uncaring like his siblings, though as things go on, Shukichi, and indeed the viewer, come to realise that this might not be the case. While Yamada sticks largely to the same beats and scenes, this does invite different interpretations, suitable enough, given the film's contemporary setting and generations. The acting is solid across the board, the cast all managing to do justice to their roles, the older and younger stars impressing with naturalistic turns. Thankfully, as with his other works, Yamada again shows artful restraint when it comes to melodrama, and the film is moving and involving throughout as a result.

Of course, none of this is enough to make Tokyo Family the equal of Tokyo Story though as an homage it's a very creditable effort, and an enjoyable and well-made film in its own right. Yamada Yoji does as a good a job as possible, and successfully updates the themes of the original to the present day, offering a fascinating picture of changing Japanese families and society in the process.

by James Mudge - BeyondHollywood.com

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 "Tokyo Family (2013) (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for this Edition: Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (1)

Kevin Kennedy
See all my reviews


November 14, 2014

1 people found this review helpful

A timely, if time-consuming, update Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
Upon the release of "Tokyo Family", its director Yamada Yoji was savaged by critics for having the temerity to remake Ozu Yasujiro's treasured classic "Tokyo Story". I brought a unique perspective to viewing "Tokyo Family": I had never seen the Ozu classic (I've now watched it twice) and had no idea that Yamada's film was based upon it. I approached "Tokyo Family" with an open mind and was enthralled, delighted, and deeply moved. "Tokyo Family" is terrific.

The film's story is nearly identical to the Ozu original. Elderly couple Shukichi (Hashizume Isao) and Tomiko (Yoshiyuki Kazuko) travel from their island home to Tokyo to visit with their adult offspring, the medical doctor Koichi (Nishimura Masahiko), beauty parlor owner Shigeko (Nakajima Tomoko), and theatrical set craftsman Shoji (Tsumabuki Satoshi). The unfilial offspring, caught up in the details of their daily lives, neglect to make time for their parents. Instead, Koichi and Shigeko ship the old folks off to a Yokohama seaside resort hotel. The only personal connection between them occurs when mother Tomiko stays at Shoji's tiny apartment, where she meets Shoji's sweetly adorable fiancee Noriko (Aoi Yu). Soon thereafter, Tomiko collapses and the family draws together by her hospital bedside.

Yamada borrows from Ozu not only the general storyline, but also some of the dialogue and much of the film's visual style. However, Yamada doesn't treat the original as a sacrosanct text; he uses it as a rough draft. He offers variations that freshen the story. The father in Ozu's film was a warm-hearted man whom one would expect to be beloved by his children; Yamada's father figure is a distant, demanding man who seems to have driven his children away. Ozu's Shige was a shrewish skinflint; Yamada's Shigeko is more nuanced and humorous. The Shoji character, absent from the Ozu film, becomes the endearing glue that holds Yamada's movie together. Most importantly, Yamada allows actress Yoshiyuki Kazuko to create a livelier, more endearing Tomiko, which makes her sudden collapse seem all the more shocking than the similar episode in Ozu's film.

An almost universal complaint about "Tokyo Family" is that it is overlong and here I must agree. Both times I watched it, I needed to give myself an intermission. However, it is a smoothly directed, beautifully shot film, graced with splendid performances by its skilled ensemble cast and a gorgeous film score from Hisaishi Joe. Very highly recommended.
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