Continuing the theme of unforgettable flavours, I watched Ozu’s Ochazuke no Aji last night. The fact that an estranged couple of different social class and family upbringing can bond over a humble dish of Ochazuke (rice with condiments, submerged in green tea) is very telling of food’s ability to speak to the soul. Ochazuke is a quintessentially Japanese dish usually made at home with leftovers. Its simple and primitive taste is a metaphor for what marriage should be- honest at heart. Taeko, the wife, finally realizes that marital pleasure is derived from commonplace gestures, easy company, mutual respect and understanding of each other’s habits. The ability to uncover such subtleties and complexities in familial relationships is what makes Ozu a great filmmaker.

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