Towards the end of his career, Japanese master Yasujirō Ozu (Tokyo Story, Late Spring, Early Summer, An Autumn Afternoon, Good Morning) returned to a story he had made some 25 years earlier as a silent movie: Ukigusa monogatari.
He gave the film – which translates as A Story Of Floating Weed – a magnificent colour reworking, photographed by legendary cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa (Rashomon, Ugetsu monogatari).
The plot is simple enough. When a travelling theatre troupe brings their show to a seaside port, Komajurō (Ganjirō Nakamura), an ageing actor, is reunited with his former lover, sake bar owner Oyoshi (Haruko Sugimura), and his illegitimate son Kiyoshi (Hiroshi Kawaguchi), to the distress of his current mistress Sumiko (Machiko Kyō).
From this basic scenario, Ozu builds, one exquisite image at a time, a saga of profound humanity and rich understanding. Encompassing a novelistic range of emotions and tones with the utmost delicacy, Floating Weeds stands tall even amidst a body of work as extraordinary as Ozu’s.
Don’t believe us? Well soon it’ll be making its worldwide Blu-ray debut as part of Eureka Entertainment’s Masters of Cinema series, so you can check out a beautiful new high-definition restoration and see for yourself.
Eureka is releasing both a regular DVD edition and a dual format (Blu-ray and DVD) edition on 3 December 2012.
Special features include:
• Newly translated optional English subtitles
• Original Japanese theatrical trailer
• Illustrated booklet featuring the words of Ozu, rare archival imagery and more.
There could be some additional extras appearing on the disc too, as Eureka says further details will be announced nearer the release date.