Yasujiro Ozu's Good Morning
Amos Vogel left no stone unturned in compiling Film as a Subversive Art. Describing Japanese master Yasujirō Ozu’s late-period satire Good Morning, he singles out an important recurring element throughout the film: “It is surprising to connect the apparently gentle, pacific Ozu with the breaking of a taboo. However, in this (his fiftieth film!), a quiet satire on Japanese suburbia and Westernization, there is a plot element unthinkable in the Western cinema until Ferrari’s 1973 La Grande Bouffe: an elaborate, noisy running gag—encouraged by the eating of pumice stones—involving a children’s game of farting throughout the film. It is liberating to laugh repeatedly at this gag and, in fact, to look forward to it.” A remake of his earlier, silent film I Was Born, But… (1932), Ohayō is gentle and playful while at the same time turning on a pointed critique of consumption, as the young boys are obsessed with television.
Good Morning (Yasujiro Ozu, Japan, 1959, 93 min.) In Japanese with English subtitles
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