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Floating Weeds - Ukigusa (1959) - Color - 119 min

LikeTelevision™ proudly presents - Floating Weeds or Ukigusa which is the roginal Japanese title. This is one of acclaimed director Yasujiro Ozu's finest works. It tells the wonderful story of Komajuro Arashi, an aging master of a travelling Kabuke troupe that is hits the skids in a small Japanese towns. (or to coin a phrase from This is Spinal Tap - their appeal is becoming more selective). Master Komajuro wants to see his son, who has grown up since his last visit a decade ago and his aging mistress, Sumiko. Of course this angers his current flame, the top actress of the show. Like many a spurned women, she seeks vengence and the results are disastrous. This is a great story from one of the best directors of all time and while many people might prefer Ozu's Tokyo Monogatari, Floating Weeds is my personal favorite.

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Floating Weeds - Ukigusa
Directed by - Yasujiro Ozu

(1959) - Color - 119 min
One of the best parts of this film is the terrific cinematography, which should come as no surprise. Cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa's work includes Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon, Yojimbo, and Kenji Mizoguchi's Ugetsu Monogatari to name but a few of his best works. Miyagawa's stunning use of color and clever montage sequences will be appreciated by film buffs for years to come.

Part one
Intro, color, title screens, credits, etc. Director Yasujiro Ozu starts the movie with a wonderful montage sequence - great stuff. Like most Japanese films - the pacing is slow and deliberate and a perfect foil to the current Hollywood methodolgy of super fast cuts and super slow motion. Either you slow your brain down and love it or you grab your mouse button. Give it a try - there's a wonderful beauty is the slow pacing. We join the actors and actresses who are on a slow boat, not to China - but to a southern port somewhere in Japan.

Ganjiro Nakamura as Master Komajuro Arashi

a cool scene from one of the shows

Part two
But the show must go on - even if the audience is thin and one can only hope that the manager will drum up some business and not run off. (ooops - bad idea, don't trust the manager). The master takes some time to meet his old mistress and his long lost son... but he doesn't want the son to know a thing about it, so he acts like he is an uncle - the boy's mother's brother.

Machiko Kyo as Sumiko -the master's mistress

Part three
The lead actress Kiyoshi, the master's current lover, gets suspicious and does her best to find out why the master is spending all that time with the young boy. Then she comes up with a diabolical plan to have a beautiful young actress named Kayo - vamp the young boy.

Floating Weeds - Ukigusa Message Board

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Floating Weeds - Ukigusa
Directed by - Yasujiro Ozu

Starring - Ganjiro Nakamura as Master Komajuro Arashi, Hiroshi Kawaguchi as Kiyoshi Homma, Machiko Kyo as Sumiko, Ayako Wakao as Kayo, Hikaru Hoshi as Kimura, Haruko Sugimura as Oyoshi, Haruo Tanaka as Yatazo, Yosuke Irie as Sugiyama, Hitomi Nozoe as Aiko,

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Ayako Wakao as Kayo - who vamps the master's son, then falls in love with him

Part four
Ah - but Kayo is not a good vamp and she falls in love with the master's son - not realizing that he is the master's son. As the plot unfolds and the master learns about it, the show continues to go down hill.

A vivid poster from the show juxtaposed with the quiet of a sleepy seaport

Part five
Meanwhile - some of the actors are getting edgy - and wonder what they are going to do with themselves. Will they get stranded? They even consider stealing the master's money - and while the show must go on, not are many people are going to it.

the master's son gives a kiss to the beautiful actress

Part six
Watch the stunning conclusion to Floating Weeds - will the master's son get burned by the pretty girl? Will the master decide to stay with his mistress and giv up his acting career? and will the travelling show go bust? Check it out and see for yourselves.

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Hiroshi Kawaguchi as Kiyoshi Homma - once a whore, now the lead actress of the show and the master's main squeeze - who becomes the spurned woman. Hell hath no fury like a woman spurned - remember that.

the master's son has grown up

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