The VIZ Cinema at Post & Webster is, this week only, screening four of the six films directed by Yasujiro Ozu that feature one of the greatest living movie stars of all time, Setsuko Hara. Beginning her career in the 1930s at the dawn of the Japanese talking picture, in 1953 she played the faithful "Noriko" in Tokyo Story, and she retired ten years later after a career of more than 100 films. (Her reclusiveness in the 47 years since was an inspiration for the late Satoshi Kon's visually stunning animated film Millenium Actress).
The four Setsuko Hara films VIZ is bringing include one of Ozu's greatest masterpieces Late Spring from 1949, his 1951 Early Summer (parts 1 & 2 in the so-called "Noriko trilogy"), his atypcially noir-ish Tokyo Twilight from 1957, and my own favorite of his color films, Late Autumn, from which the above screen capture was taken. It plays this afternoon at 12:30, tomorrow at 6:00 PM, and Monday at 4:30.
An almost-equally tantalizing program of films by Kenji Mizoguchi, featuring his frequent leading lady Kinuyo Tanaka, happens at the VIZ later this month.