Tomio Aoki

  • Yasujirô Ozu – Tokkan kozô AKA A Straightforward Boy (1929)

    Yasujiro Ozu1921-1930ComedyJapanSilent
    Tokkan kozô (1929)
    Tokkan kozô (1929)

    One of the earliest surviving silent comedies by master filmmaker Yasujiro Ozu, A Straightforward Boy is a rambunctious, adorable kidnapping caper now screening in a new restoration that restores to it eight long-lost and recently rediscovered minutes. The short features one of the all-time great child actors, Tomio Aoki, at age six and in his first starring role as the titular boy all too happy to be abducted – so long as his petty-crook captors (Tatsuo Saitô and Takeshi Sakamoto) are willing to endure his company. Aoki’s extraordinary career would go on to include over 300 films, from Ozu’s 1932 I Was Born, But… to Seijun Suzuki’s 2001 Pistol Opera.Read More »

  • Makoto Shinozaki – Wasurerarenu hitobito AKA Not Forgotten (2000)

    1991-2000AsianDramaJapanMakoto Shinozaki

    The central characters are elderly men, former soldiers in the Pacific War, one of whom is still haunted by guilt for abandoning a wounded colleague to die. When the ‘religious’ cult Utopia turns up and starts swindling old people out of their savings and homes, the veterans are goaded into action one last time.Read More »

  • Koreyoshi Kurahara – Kaitei kara kita onna AKA The Woman from the Sea (1959)

    1951-1960FantasyHorrorJapanKoreyoshi Kurahara

    “A curious hybrid of taiyôzoku-eiga (“Sun Tribe”) and “girl-diver” genres, Koreyoshi Kurahara’s mermaid tale plays out like no other midnight movie in history – sinister, sensual and ethereal, it unfurls almost in slow motion. Hisako Tsukuba plays a voluptuous, gloomy beauty who likes to feast on fish guts.”Read More »

  • Shôhei Imamura – Nippon konchûki AKA The Insect Woman (1963)

    Drama1961-1970ClassicsJapanShohei Imamura

    Tome is born into poverty in rural Japan, in the late 1910s. Chuji, her father, dotes on her; her mother is less faithful. Tome becomes a neighbor’s mistress, works at his mill as World War II rages, and has a daughter. After an affair with a mill supervisor, Tome goes to Tokyo to seek her fortune. She leaves the child, Nobuko, in Chuji’s care. Tome’s a maid at a brothel, learns trade from the madam, enjoys the protection of a businessman whose mistress she becomes, and is soon herself the boss. As Chuji ages and Nobuko grows up with her own ideas, can Tome’s self-preserving schemes provide continued comfort? Or will the mice scamper over her?Read More »

  • Yasujiro Ozu – Otona No Miru Ehon – Umarete Wa Mita Keredo AKA I Was Born, But… (1932)

    1931-1940ComedyJapanSilentYasujiro Ozu

    Yoshii and his family move to a Tokyo suburb, to the same neighborhood as his boos. His two boys are initially terrorized by the school bully, and run truant. Eventually, they beat up and usurp the bully’s place, lording it over all the boys, including the boss’ son.

    Mr. Yoshii (Tatsuo Saito), an office clerk, has moved his young family into a new neighborhood in the suburbs, strategically located just a few blocks from his employer, Mr. Iwasaki (Takeshi Sakamoto). One afternoon, while playing outdoors, Yoshii’s younger son, Keichi (Tomio Aoki) catches the attention of the neighborhood children, among them, Iwasaki’s son, who proceed to tease him.Read More »

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