Walk Cheerfully

Judith F. Rosenberg is well known to PFA audiences, who have appreciated her sensitive piano accompaniment for silent films for the last five years. She has been artist/lecturer and music director of the dance department at Mills College since 1973.

(Hogaraka ni ayume). In love with American films, Ozu made melodramas and gangster films-in quotes, much like his hero Lubitsch. There's plenty of American style to be had in the world of petty thieves, confidence men, and flappers he evokes in this comedy about a delinquent boy who reforms for the love of a virtuous girl. But it's pure Ozu, developing his special knack for establishing atmosphere. The opening sequence is a dazzling display, the colliding vectors of human and camera movement; the young hoods are masters of signs and gestures, and the camera is their medium. The Ozu tatami shot is already in evidence, and objects are already more than the sum of their clutter, but Walk Cheerfully, while truly beautiful, is rarely contemplative. It's a film about quirks and collective fetishes: a cinematic attitude. Nobody could extract humor from a tapping foot, a fedora placed just so, or a repeated tic the way Ozu could in the silents.

This page may by only partially complete. For additional information about this film, view the original entry on our archived site.