Were one to attempt and define the general element in all films by Yasujiro Ozu, he/she would realize that this star had an eye for the human tales about everyday life. In deciding to capture this quality, he used various genres and their dialogues to highlight the specific points that he was trying to put across. Although perceived by some as being a filmmaker with a weakness for slow moving, conservatively lensed films, the certainty proves to be far dissimilar. Whereas it is true that he has mainly made dramas, in the “Good Morning” film, Ozu demonstrates that he is a skilled comedy director. Naturally, “Good Morning” has a greater emphasis on the character interaction as well as eccentricities, as opposed to absurdist and slapstick humor, but it is distinctive in its depth of view into the human nature. For this reason, this critique journal centers on the formal composition of Ozu’s enjoyable comedy, “Good Morning.”
“Good Morning” is Ozu’s 49th movie released in 1959. Shot in principal colors and filled with the director’s trademark rigid framing, “Good morning” is a thoroughly enjoyable comedy, which tells the ordeals of two young brothers, Isamu and Minoru. The two brothers live with their parents Keitaro and Tamiko, in a middle- class residential region of the suburban Tokyo. The two young brothers are reluctantly the cause of a squabble among the neighborhood. The story, though ostensibly being about Minoru and Isamu, and their silence strike intended to pressure their parents into purchasing a TV set, is as well about the grown-up world of empty dialogue and, on the contrary, double- speak. It is worth mentioning that the storytelling in this classic film is essentially divided into two blocks: the children and the parents. In the parental block, the husbands and wives are further given different treatment, whereas the children are left as a single unit, considering that they only consist of young boys.
The movie is shot in fairly startling color, instead of black and white, and this gives it a glossy visual sheen, which is suitable for the subject matter. Otherwise, the director’s trademark visual look is untouched. The film is filled with the similar beautiful composed long shots, most frequently filmed from close to the ground, and edited carefully. While there is a serious theme to this movie that involves the art and the significance of communication and the way varied generations view it, its treatment is instead superficial and light. Ozu provides a number of wonderful touches in this film from how he creates and observes a very specific and real culture to the palpable love he feels for the characters. The cast is flawlessly in tune with Ozu, and children work is particularly impressive.
The extraordinary performances of Minoru and Isamu make this film amusing. Kids can be the worst and best aspect of the film concerning family. In contrast, kids are the natural actors because of their penchant for the make believe, but because of the amount of time, distractions, and repetition inherent in creating a movie, assuring that one will be able to get an excellent performance out of a kid is very difficult to do. Kid’s concentrations flag easily and if they do not have a good time on position, then tough luck, there will not be any additional excellent scenes with them. Ozu apparently possesses a gift for working with the child actors, as demonstrated by some movies with kids in them, and “Good Morning” is unquestionably a success in this regard.
In this film, the use of the editing avoids any ostentation and is very simple. Shots are entirely immobile, as we do not observe a single camera movement in the film. The shots are also short, and they follow one another with no any transition. For instance, there is no crossfading even for the passage from outside to inside and vice versa. Thus, the editing in this film is dynamic in spite of the camera immobility. Additionally, the editing of this film is comprised of the simple broad cuts that are primarily based on the person that is speaking and the direction that they are originating from, and montage. The film director’s penchant as well as his incredible expertise in jumping the 180 degree line is more or less like magic at points.
The most peculiar thing amongst Ozu’s style is the fact that he places the camera very low, almost on the ground, essentially to the coffee table height. This is the most personalized approach of filming the Japanese normal way of sitting down. Therefore, every character movement is very horizontal besides being connected to the earth perception. The film director uses regularly a 50mm lens that he has directed approximately upward in an extremely small low angle shot. Ozu does this so that we can see the floor, walls and at times even the ceiling. This composition results in a focused and extremely symmetrical frame. All these elements are constantly equally sharp. Thus, the characters are positioned in the cubic box type that is very similar to the tiny dollhouse or theatre scene, or even obviously to the real life viewpoint of somebody that would be seated on the ground of the scene.
Through adopting a methodical approach to the spatial narrative by the demiurgic architectural mise-en-scene, Ozu in “Good Morning” film has managed to reconstruct an experimental microcosm that he methodically explains the mechanisms. In other language, the interactions between people operating in this microcosm, but similarly between people and their temporal and spatial environment, whereof he tries to draw ontological and moral conclusions at the similar time. This film holds numerous humor nuggets, either poetic or trivial. In fact, Ozu has to be a relatively a joker to close his film on a shot screening underpants fluttering on a light music. In a nut shell, I was impressed by how all the elements in this movie exist mainly to tell the story, and the value of the story. Unquestionably, “Good Morning” film is light-hearted and enjoyable, which I would advise as a good family viewing.