Yasujiro Ozu

The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice

The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice

One of the ineffably lovely domestic sagas made by Yasujiro Ozu at the height of his mastery, The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice is a sublimely piercing portrait of a marriage coming quietly undone. Secrets and deceptions strain the already tenuous relationship of a childless, middle-aged couple, as the wife’s city-bred sophistication bumps up against the husband’s small-town simplicity, and a generational sea change—in the form of her headstrong, modern niece—sweeps over their household. The director’s abiding concern with family dynamics receives one of its most spirited treatments, with a wry, tender humor and buoyant expansiveness that moves the action from the home into the baseball stadiums, pachinko parlors, and ramen shops of postwar Tokyo.

Film Info

  • Yasujiro Ozu
  • Japan
  • 1952
  • 116 minutes
  • Black & White
  • 1.37:1
  • Japanese
  • Spine #989

Special Features

  • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • What Did the Lady Forget?, a 1937 feature by Yasujiro Ozu
  • New video essay by film scholar David Bordwell
  • Ozu & Noda, a new documentary by Daniel Raim on Ozu’s longtime collaboration with screenwriter Kogo Noda
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by scholar Junji Yoshida

New cover by Katherine Lam

Purchase Options

Released Aug 27, 2019

Special Features

  • New 4K digital restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • What Did the Lady Forget?, a 1937 feature by Yasujiro Ozu
  • New video essay by film scholar David Bordwell
  • Ozu & Noda, a new documentary by Daniel Raim on Ozu’s longtime collaboration with screenwriter Kogo Noda
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by scholar Junji Yoshida

New cover by Katherine Lam

The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice
Cast
Shin Saburi
Mokichi Satake
Michiyo Kogure
Taeko
Koji Tsuruta
Noboru
Chishu Ryu
Sadao Hirayama
Chikage Awashima
Aya Amamiya
Keiko Tsushima
Setsuko
Credits
Director
Yasujiro Ozu
Script
Kogo Noda
Script
Yasujiro Ozu
Cinematography
Yuharu Atsuta
Art direction
Tatsuo Hamada
Lighting
Itsuo Takashita
Editing
Yoshiyasu Hamamura
Music
Ichiro Saito

From The Current

Ozu and Noda: Birds of a Feather
Ozu and Noda: Birds of a Feather

A new documentary by filmmaker Daniel Raim, featured on our release of The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice, explores one of Japanese cinema’s most fruitful writer-director partnerships.

The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice: Acquired Tastes
The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice: Acquired Tastes

Class tensions in postwar Japan unsettle the domestic life of a middle-aged couple in this sweetly satirical marriage comedy from Yasujiro Ozu.

By Junji Yoshida

Explore

Yasujiro Ozu

Writer, Director

Yasujiro Ozu
Yasujiro Ozu

Yasujiro Ozu has often been called the “most Japanese” of Japan’s great directors. From 1927, the year of his debut for Shochiku studios, to 1962, when, a year before his death at age sixty, he made his final film, Ozu consistently explored the rhythms and tensions of a country trying to reconcile modern and traditional values, especially as played out in relations between the generations. Though he is best known for his sobering 1953 masterpiece Tokyo Story, the apex of his portrayals of the changing Japanese family, Ozu began his career in the thirties, in a more comedic, though still socially astute, mode, with such films as I Was Born, But . . . and Dragnet Girl. He then gradually mastered the domestic drama during the war years and afterward, employing both physical humor, as in Good Morning, and distilled drama, as in Late Spring, Early Summer, and Floating Weeds. Though Ozu was discovered relatively late in the Western world, his trademark rigorous style—static shots, often from the vantage point of someone sitting low on a tatami mat; patient pacing; moments of transcendence as represented by the isolated beauty of everyday objects—has been enormously influential among directors seeking a cinema of economy and poetry.