Early Summer….?


First off, I have a huge question that I need the answer to. Why was the movie called “Early Summer”? I guess the movie took place in the summer time but what did that have to do with anything about the story. Speaking of story there hardly was any story. I felt the plot could have been more stronger. I understand it was a family themed film and I usually love family films because I tend to only watch films with my family in the first place but this one wasn’t working for me.

In the beginning, I thought the movie would be interesting especially when the younger son Isamu (he’s so cute!), did some childish things while they were eating. For a young kid, he is very good at acting. I really loved Noriko’s character. She was always smiling and happy throughout the whole film but then right at the end you see her vulnerable side of her crying when she realizes she has to leave the family. I felt like things were missing in the film. You almost get a taste of things but you never got to eat the whole meal, if you know what I mean. If we actually had gotten to eat the whole meal maybe the movie would be more interesting and the plot would be stronger.

As a female, I actually loved how the female characters had their own thinking and made decisions for themselves. I think that’s the only thing that kept me awake during the film along with cute little Isamu. The family is portrayed like an actual family I can see that because even now kids are spoiled and they do disrespect their parents at times. They always want new toys and never listen. It was pretty obvious that the camera was in one spot during most of the movie. At a point, I realized my eyes were at the bottom of the screen for most of the time. It was good especially for scenes that took place in the house because it made me feel like I was actually sitting there. I think sitting there would have been more interesting then watching the movie itself but I have to say I learned more about cinematography with this film.

3 Responses to “Early Summer….?”

  1.   jwolpoe Says:

    Have you ever heard of the Bechdel Test? Your comment about the relationships between the women in the film reminded me of it. Anyway, I also liked how the women were portrayed as real characters in the film, almost more than the men sometimes. It definitely kept my attention, although to be honest the only part of the film I really felt that I was missing was the friends wedding. The jump past it was too abrupt for me.

  2.   dannyjustin Says:

    I think it’s called Early Summer because at the end there is an elipsed shot of a barley field (instead of one that gives closure to the narrative) that is ripening. A similar device is used at the end of Early Summer: we are not shown the wedding but there is a nuptial reference, and the suggestion is made that one such ceremony is much like another. As the anecdote fades away what Ozu intended when he said that “I tried to portray the cycle of life. I wasn’t interested in action for its own sake.”

  3.   alyssacaracciolo Says:

    I agree with you about the female characters. Once again, I loved seeing women in this time period and this culture, when women were generally not thought much of, think for themselves and follow their own beliefs.

    And yes, Isamu was adorable!

    I know what you mean about things missing in the film, but I’m pretty sure Ozu did that on purpose. He used the “narrative ellipses” we discussed in class. I’m not sure if he meant to use it to keep the audience guessing, or if he used it to make stronger points. As much as it disappointed me to not see some things, I enjoyed it and thought it was a clever technique.

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