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The Whole Family Works (1939)

The Whole Family Works, Mikio Naruse's adaptation of a Sunao Tokunaga novel, feels more of a piece with the writer/director's quietly observant and psychologically charged later work. For the Naruse-familiar, it is an anomaly only in its placement within his filmography—indeed, this could be a film made by the elder, stasis-minded Naruse momentarily inhabiting, through a metaphysical twist of fate, his stylistically exuberant younger self. Set in depression-era Japan around the time of the Sino-Japanese War (which the director evokes, during a brief dream sequence, by dissolving between children's war games and actual adult warfare), The Whole Family Works gently observes a family coming apart at the seams. Ishimura (Musei Tokugawa) is the jobless father of nine children.

Directing:
  • Mikio Naruse

Writing:
  • Mikio Naruse
  • Sunao Tokunaga

Stars:
themoviedb icon 6.0/10
  • Country: JP
  • Language: 日本語
  • Runtime: 65
Noriko Honma
Noriko Honma
Ishimura's wife
Den Ohinata
Den Ohinata
Ogawa - the teacher
Susumu Fujita
Susumu Fujita
Genji's fellow worker
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