Ochazuke no aji (Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice) (1964)
Ochazuke no aji (Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice) Photos
Critic Reviews for Ochazuke no aji (Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice)
Yasujiro Ozu's delicate melodramas (this one dates from his finest period, 1951) avoid any sense of cliche in their restrained, sometimes painfully subtle study of family relationships.
No one shrug or sigh or smile is more or less dispensible than another gesture, which explains why minor characters are so important in Ozu films.
The Flavor of Green Tea over Rice tells the story of a marriage unraveling as Japan moves from its pre-war traditions and into a more modern existence.
...a gentle satire among a sea of [Ozu's] family dramas and tragedies.
Audience Reviews for Ochazuke no aji (Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice)
Flavor of Green Tea Over Rice starts with an excellent shot. Riding in the back of a car are two women, one is dressed in modern westernised clothes, while the other is dressed in a kimono. Such a shot perfectly captures many of Ozu's themes. Ozu then strengthens his topics with a simple conversation where Setsuko discusses seeing a French movie. Taeko is a bored housewife that insults her husband on a country getaway with her friends and niece. This really offends her niece Setsuko, and when it comes time for a wedding interview Setsuko is terrified that she will end up like her cruel aunt. Taeko's husband Mokichi is a very simple man with great patience. He tries to go along with his wife, but eventually it all becomes toomuch. She doesn't like the way he eats, the way he travels, or the cigarette brand he smokes. If I have one problem with this movie it's that Taeko is the most unlikable of Ozu's characters I have seen. She is simply cruel to an extent that it goes beyond culture/generational differences. Luckily it all adds together for an incredible ending. In true Ozu style, the married couple struggling to make something as simple as rice ignites their love and they decide to really make a go of things. It's really comforting to see a film that avoids all melodrama and rushes to the airports. It proves that subtlety can be a powerful thing.
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