The Sea Is Watching (2002) Script

Nikkatsu 90th Anniversary Film


Executive Producer - Masaya Nakamura Planning - Hisao Kurosawa Producer - Naoto Sarukawa Original Story - Shugoro Yamamoto

Written by Akira Kurosawa

Starring Misa Shimizu - Nagiko Tohno Masatoshi Nagasu - Hidetaka Yoshioka

Directed by Kei Kumai

"That night, under a harvest moon...

"so bright it left no shade...

"the brothers went out...

"into the garden to play...

"and saw wild geese flying...

"to who knows where.

"Of those five wild geese...

"one must be the father...

"one the mother, and three their children.

"You are the younger brother, I am the elder...

"and though our mother is indeed our mother..."


Let's close up.

There won't be any more customers tonight.

Where you going, samurai?

You're a good-looking guy, you know. Let's have some fun.

Come on, why don't you?

Don't just walk by!

Could I come in... and spend the night?

She seems to know you.

I've never been here before.

Come in, please.

This way.

Miss Kikuno! Someone to stay.


Up here.

In here.

Your sword.

I'll bring tea.

-Could I have the service now? -The service?

The due.

What you pay for coming in, and for staying the night.

-How much? -400 mon.

No, this is far too much.

Take it, please.

I was in a fight. They're after me.

Someone might come here looking for me.

All right.

This might be dusty.

Change into this.

-Where's the Missus? -Gone to bed.

Then you keep this, miss.

It's that man's service... and a tip to share with everyone.

He was in a fight and they're after him. You know what to do.

We'll say he's a regular... a cabinet-maker named Taiji.

Beware of fire!

Is your fire out?

Quick! Get changed.

Where were you fighting?

I was with my friends from my household... at a teahouse near Hachiman Shrine.

-You fought with them? -No.

I was blind drunk.

I've never really gone drinking before.

All I remember is someone holding me... and my sword being taken away.

So you stabbed someone?

So it would seem.

That's right.

It was someone in the next room.

There was a crowd drinking in there, too.

A samurai?

Maybe. But whoever it was...

I slashed him.

Did you kill him?

No, I don't think so.

Someone shouted:

"Split up, and don't go home tonight."

I started running, and somehow I ended up here.

We've got to disguise you.

What are you doing?

They'll know you're a samurai by your hair.

They'll know you're a samurai by your hair.

You're Taiji the cabinet-maker, a regular customer of mine.

That's your kimono.

Watchman! Raise the bar!

Watchman! Raise the bar!



This way.

Open up!

Get into bed and pretend you're sound asleep.

Open up!

That sounds like Ume.

-An officer? -The local constable.

Alone he wouldn't be a problem... but if he's got others with him...

I won't eat you. Come over here.

Coming. Well!

-Got any samurai staying here? -No.

The woman across the way says one came in here.

Oh, that samurai?

He just looked us over and went on his way.

Anyone else here?

-There's one with O-Shin. -We'll have a look at him.

He's no samurai.

He's a regular. His name is Taiji. He's a cabinet-maker.

You've got to relax.

Come on. Act like you're here all the time.

We'd like to see him.


O-Shin! Inspection!

This way.

Hey! We're coming in!

What do you want, Ume?

We're looking for someone. We'd like to see your customer.

Hey, honey, inspection.

He's one of your regulars?

Yes. He's a cabinet-maker named Taiji.

Wake him up, will you?

All right.

Come on, honey, wake up.

Wake up and put this on. Come on, honey.

Shut up, will you?


You can't do a damn thing with him when he's drunk.


Go away!

Taiji! Honey!

That's enough.

I don't want to see any more of this.

Is that how you treat a client? Come on.

What do you mean? You said to wake him up.

That won't be necessary.

What a night.

Did your samurai go?

Just now.


Come into my room and have some tea.

No, thanks. I'm going to get a little sleep.

What a mess that was last night.

What happened afterwards?

He put on his kimono, kneeled, bowed and said:

"I thank you."

Then he straightened up and sat there all night.

All I could do was bow back and kneel there myself.

-All night? -Yes.

Oh, dear.

Good night, then.


-Excuse me. -Yes, miss?

That samurai seems like a very nice young man.

But he isn't somebody you should be falling for.

I know that.

Anyway, he won't be back.

That's fine, then.

Good night.

-Aren't they nice? -Which one?

-This one. -All right.

We'll take this one.

Is Kikuno's "steady" that yakuza-looking fellow?


I keep telling her to break it off with him... but she won't listen.

He's brought her no end of grief.

She was working the licensed quarter... but he gambled away all her money... and she's gone down since then.

He's always going on and on... about how she can't live without him.


I'm going now. This is for you.

You're too kind!

This way, please.

Think about it, will you?

What does he want you to think about?

Moving somewhere else again.

He knows I don't want to.

This gentleman would like to come in.

Well, bring him in, of course.

He wants to see the girl upstairs, in the back room on the left.

O-Shin? All right.

But she went out... with her younger sister.

I saw them at the bridge.

I'll go get her. Go on upstairs and wait there.

This way, please.

Take care you don't get sick.


You have a customer.

Is something wrong?

Now my mother's sick.

Oh, dear. So soon after your father died... after being ill so long.

We'll be fine. I'll make money. I'm still young.


Thank you for helping me the other day.

I'm sorry.

I don't need any tea.

What is it?

I'm a little worried about a customer of O-Shin's.

-Who is he? -A young samurai.

And she's always falling in love with customers.

Old fogies like me are the best customers for a place like this.

Just old men that no girl would ever fall for.

Laugh if you want, but I'm talking about you, too.

The man who was just here is no good for you.

The man who was just here is no good for you.

Why don't you come live with me? I've got the perfect house.

I'm serious, you know.

But I guess I have my answer.

So for drawing my sword, I'm banned from my father's house.

I'm staying at an uncle's.

I had to sneak out.

I guess it's time I was going.

I can't even walk the streets without this on.

But I'll come back sometimes.

By the way, what's your name?


It is?

I am Ihara Fusanosuke.

You mustn't come back here ever again.


That's a nice name.


You mustn't! I'll tell them not to let you in!

You mustn't come here!

"Parting the grass, they saw a sprig of deutzia buds...

"fallen on the ground.

"Picking it up, Juro said:

"Look, Goro...

"a flower once bloomed will hold to the vine, while a bud will fall.

"Death waits not on age."

What does that mean?

The young sometimes die before the old.

"Were we to die...

"while our aged mother still lived...

"it would be verily..."


As if.

Keep quiet and listen, will you?


Come inside, girls.

There won't be any business today.

Come sit at the kotatsu and relax.

Anyone coming today must want it really bad.

Thank you.

It's freezing.


Miss Kikuno, it's Emeritus.

Come in!


I'll drink here if you don't mind.

I'm chilled to the marrow of my bones.

I brought you all some sweet dumplings.

I'll have some sake heated for you.

Thank you for coming on a day like this.

Well, my house is on the river.

It's cool in summer, but freezing in winter.

And I'm all alone there now.

I was sitting at the brazier, and I suddenly felt like coming here.

I thought you wouldn't be busy... so we could all talk ourselves silly.

-I'll stay the night. -Please do.

Go ahead.

They look so good!

Thank you.

I ran into that young samurai in Kiba the other day.

I say "ran into."

We just passed each other on the street.

He's been here time and again since that night.

But O-Shin says not to let him in.

What a waste!

Well, considering who he is... that's best.

No matter if he loves O-Shin... or she loves him back... it could simply never be. They're from different castes.


But Miss Kikuno comes from a samurai family.

Let's not talk about that.

It's him. Tell him to go away.


I'd like to come in to see O-Shin.

I'm sorry.

She's with a customer today.

A customer?

On a day like this?


You don't want me to come in.

Why not?

That's not it at all.

I'm sorry, but...

He's gone.

Don't just stand there.

Take her an umbrella.

I don't like it, though...


What's wrong with it?

Why pretend she doesn't like him when she does?

A girl's got to enjoy herself while she can.


We're human, too!

It's so warm today... you'd think it's spring.


Would you mind if I asked you something?

What is it?

Where are you living now?

At my uncle's.

I'm still banned.

Then this is the last place you should be coming to.

What's wrong with it?

I want to see you.

I like being with you.

But we're from different castes.

Who cares?

There are other people in the world than samurai.

If my father persists in this ban...

I'll give up my sword.

I could start a school somewhere.


I'm a fallen woman.

That's no fault of yours.

You're not fallen.

You're just unfortunate.

But a body once soiled can never be made pure.

Of course it can!

A person's body...

Listen to me.

A person's body is always changing.

Hair, nails, teeth... they fall out and grow back again.

If you stopped what you do...

If you stopped what you do... in a while you'd be pure again.

I'm sure of it!

That's what a body's like.

It'd be too horrible for words if it weren't!

O-Shin... we'd like to talk to you.

Don't wear that make-up anymore.

We overheard... what that samurai was saying... about how you'd be made pure if you stopped working for a while.

He's absolutely right!

It wouldn't be fair if it wasn't like that!

We talked to Miss Kikuno... and the three of us have decided to help you.

We won't let you take customers.

We'll divide up your clients.

That's all very well for you. You like the work.

I don't mind, either.

When I heard him...

I started to cry.

I want to do whatever I can for both of you!

But I couldn't...

That's right.

You've got things to take care of, don't you?

We know that.

We'll give O-Shin the money... we make from her customers.

All right?


We'll talk to the Missus.

We can tell your regular customers that you're ill.

The most important thing is that he's serious!


Imagine one of us marrying a samurai!

You understand, Miss Kikuno.

You were a samurai's wife.

But I couldn't let you...

You can't wear a bright kimono like that anymore.

That's right.

If it's O-Shin you want... she got sick and went home.

You can have me if you want. I'll show you a real good time.

Are you going to wait till she gets better... whenever that is?

Honey, you're looking good! Got some time for me?

Honey, you're looking good! Got some time for me?

Get your hands off me!

Who'd want a witch like you?

Can't afford it?

One of the girls next door tells me... you three are handling all O-Shin's customers... and giving her the money.

Brings tears to the eyes, doesn't it?

But it's strange...

you'll do all that for O-Shin... and her wet-behind-the-ears samurai... but when I ask for something...

you turn your back.

Say something!



All right?

I'm in real trouble... you know.

I need... some real money!

All right?

All right?

So you'll do it, then.


Hello! Come in.

O-Shin, it's Fusanosuke. I sent him upstairs.

Make sure no one sees you.

It looks like the ban's going to be lifted.

I have to go around and pay visits... so I won't be able to come for a while.

I have to go to another relative's house today.

Samurai formalities are such a nuisance.

I'm sorry... but I can't see you out.

I can't let anyone see me.

They've told everyone I'm sick. I'm not taking customers.

That's great!

That's wonderful!

I'm glad!

That's the best news I could hear!

Be seeing you.



My! Don't you look distinguished!


I didn't have time to send word, and I have to leave right away... but I wanted to share my good news.

Come in.

Summer's here.

I picked this by the river.

A sprig of deutzia buds.

Just like in The Soga Brothers.

"A flower once bloomed will hold to the vine, while a bud will fall."


My father's forgiven me.

Isn't that wonderful, O-Shin?

I wanted to tell you all right away.

-Let's have some sake! -Yes.

I'm afraid I can't.

I have a wedding to attend.


Mine, of course.

Her father's a counselor.

We were betrothed two years ago, when she was 15.

She's grown up into a beautiful young woman.

I thought my trouble had ended it, but I guess not.

I'm as surprised as anyone. The family ceremony's tonight.

What's the matter?


Don't you have any heart at all?

-Stop it! -Be quiet!

No! I'll say what I want! Let go of me!


Please go.

Let me go!


You thought O-Shin and I would...


Let go!

I'm stunned.

It was just...

I liked being with you.

I could relax... and forget there was a ban on me...

I'll kill him!

Let go!

Let me go!

You shouldn't be working yet.

I'm all right.

You're still awfully pale.

If you get sick again, you'll be in real trouble.

I'm all right. I'm fine.

All right, but take care of yourself.

It's really been a bad year, hasn't it?

First, that thing happens, then O-Shin gets sick... and now the Missus is ill and gone to a spa.

It's that Iouse's fault. He brought us bad luck.

That's enough about him.

Who are you to say what I can talk about?

The Missus left this house in my care. I'm the Missus.

I do things her way.

Yes, ma'am.

"Give the customers a good time, and never get involved."

"If they fall in love, you don't."

"And make sure you get paid."


Come on, honey. I'll give you a deal.

I'll come back after the holiday.

You'd better.

That's my girl.

The King of Hell pulls out liars' tongues.

I'll remember that!

Ready, lift!

Some priest. Making promises he won't keep.



Where's the Missus?

She's not here. She's gone to a spa.

She was ill, with what we don't know.

That's too bad.

This is for all of you.

Thank you.

So how's O-Shin been?

She started back today.

That's good.

That's a load off everyone's mind.

But the more I think about it, the madder I get.

Some samurai he was.

Don't say that. Think about it.

The problem was that all of you got so excited.

He was just a kid.

Shall I bring some tea?


I'm going.

At least tell me your name.



I'm so glad you're better, O-Shin.

I'm sorry for all the trouble I caused.

You don't have to apologize.

Damn him!

You never quit, do you?

At least I start.

If you've got something to say, why not say it?

All that "born a samurai" talk.


What I mean is, if you were raised a samurai... you should have seen through him.

An old samurai family... of retainers to the Shogun?

Don't make me laugh.

What does that have to do with this? Or with you?

No matter how far they may have fallen... someone born a samurai walks and talks like one.

You can tell just by the way you bow.

You don't know how, do you?

Miss O-Shin, you have a customer.

I'm glad to see you. I thought you wouldn't come back.

Listen to the waves.

It's high tide. It makes everything really damp.

You shouldn't be carrying this. We get inspected, you know.

I'll put it away.

Got any sake?

Of course.

Bring some.

You don't talk much, do you?

Tell me about yourself.

Tell me about yourself.

Who are you?


I'm the lowest of the low.

So when you were five, your mother died.

Then what?

What can a kid of that age do... but beg?

The winters were cold:.

but it's warm if you sleep with a dog.

I slept with a great big one.

That dog followed me everywhere:. like he was protecting me.

Everything I was given I shared with him.

Stop it.

No more.

But my real bad luck hadn't even begun yet.

When I was six, an old town watchman picked me up... and got me work in a drinking place in Akasaka.

I stayed there till I was 18, but he cheated me out of... the money I was supposed to get.

Then I was hired by the owner of the Matsukawa restaurant.

He said we'd decide on my pay once I'd learned to cook.

That was lucky.

No, it wasn't.

I worked like a slave for five years, then I asked him to let me cook.

"A fool like you will never have a decent trade," he said.

The next day...

my stuff was out in the street.

I'm a fool. I'm stupid.

That's why I get the short straw.

I bought that knife because I want to do something crazy.

In that case, I'm not giving it back to you.

Give me a damn drink!

If you're hard up... you shouldn't be coming here, you know.

I've got money.

The next day I went back and showed the guy my knife... and he gave me some.

Not five years' pay, though.

You didn't.

But that makes you no better than a thief.

That old man was the thief.

So... will you think again about moving in with me?

You deserve better...

than a woman like me.

No, no.

You're a fine woman.

You've suffered enough. It's time you took things easy.

Well? Will you live with me?

Here come the others.

Who's that man walking with O-Shin?

She's in love again.

With him?


I see.

Yes, you can see that from here.

I keep telling her that people with bad luck...

I keep telling her that people with bad luck... will only make her unlucky, too.

But she's always so nice to them.

She's got a good heart. She just shouldn't keep giving it away.

Misfortune added to misfortune only doubles the misery.

So what will you do?

There's no real work for a man with no craft.

My whole life has been one... of being cheated and trampled on.

Now it's my turn.

Can you understand that?


I've got no future in this world.

I'll take back what's mine, then bid life goodbye.

I know exactly how you feel.

That's exactly how my elder brother must have felt.

Your brother?


Let's not talk about this anymore. I'll bring more sake.

What's this brother of yours doing now?

He died last year.


He jumped in the river.


He worked for years as a wood-carver, but he wasn't going anywhere.

He'd get frustrated and angry.

My father'd taken a stroke, and he wasn't going to get any better.

My brother had no hope.

I'm sure he thought he was a burden to me.

I know how it feels to be driven into a corner like that.

But that just made a waste of everything you'd gone through.

I don't think that.

I do.

There must have been something else he could do.

He could have made sandals, or glued paper bags or something.

That was selfish.

Ryosuke... do you really think that?

If you think someone could live... making sandals or gluing bags... then I'll say the same to you.

If my brother should have lived, then so should you.

Isn't that right?

You don't have parents to burden you... you're young, you're healthy.

You could do anything you wanted.

Let's think about this together.

I've got money if you need some.

My father and my brother are dead. I can give it to you.

Don't be stupid.

Didn't you say my brother had made... a waste of all my trouble?

You won't waste it, will you?

Say you'll think about it.


I beg of you.


600 mon, 400...


I wouldn't.

He'll only bring you grief.

That sort of thing just ends up with the guy turning into a pimp.

The Missus wouldn't lend you money for that.

Do your work here, and think of yourself.

What I'm saying is... that women are always falling for that line... and taking on burdens.

I'm sure right now you'd walk through fire for that man... but that won't last.

It's over in a moment.


But for him, it's now that matters.

It's this moment.

It's whether he turns into that side street or not.

Whether he lives or dies.

I just want to keep him going straight ahead.

That's all.

I'm leaving.


I've got business at the lumber market tomorrow.

I'll come after that.

What is it?

You're sure?

I am.

Hey, Gonta.

Hey, Gonta.

Later, later.

I'll drop by on my way home.

I'm coming in!

Bring sake!

Where's Brother Bunji?

Sorry. Very sorry.

Down there on the right, you fool.

Bunji! I'm coming in!

This is no night to drink alone.

Let's make some noise.

Come in here, then.

O-Kichi has a shamisen.

You're right!

You sure dampened down their party.

Well, I'm a fireman, aren't I?

Play your shamisen.

Where is it this time?


Well, I'm not going.

I certainly hope you haven't signed a contract with them.

That's for moving expenses. Take it.

Of all the...

It's a great place.

It's a busy post town on the highway into Edo.

And I'll... buy out your contract there before winter comes.

You won't catch me dead there!

Is this what I get for letting you feed off me all these years?

I'm through with listening to the likes of you!


You're very bold all of a sudden.

Don't tell me...

you and that old man...

I'm free to make any promises I want.

Don't push me... you bitch!

Hey, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I'm sorry, I'm telling you.

Forgive me.

Don't. No!

Stop it.

Stop it!

You won't listen to me, huh?

You? Move in with that geezer? Don't make me laugh.

You try something like that and he'll get hurt.

Miss Kikuno, are you all right?

That beast.

You hate to see a thing like that. It gets you down.

"The wind howls, the rain pelts down."

The bridge could wash out.

Let's go.


That won't do any good!

I'll never get home in this.

You must be hungry. Come and have lunch with us.

All right, I will.

They're leaving across the way. I'll go see how high the river is.

Don't. You never know what'll come blowing along in this wind.

It's stopped.

See? That's the end of that storm.

Get out!

The bridges at Kuroebashi and Hachimanbashi are washed out!

What are you doing?

It'll flood!

The crest's coming downstream right now!

And it's flood tide, too! It'll come in from the sea as well!


What's happening?

We have to go.

The house was left in my care.

Don't be a fool! Hurry!

Take me with you.



We'd better go.

You take O-Shin and get out of here.

You, too.

You've done all you could. Get your things.


Only take what you'll need!


Come with me and let's get out of here.

Is that the Missus'?

Huh? Oh, this?

We can't leave her money-box. We'll take it for her.

Give it to me.

It's heavy. I'll carry it.

Quick! There's no time to waste!

I'm not going with you.


I'm going with them. Give me that.

What are you talking about? I came all the way here to help you!

Give it to me!

I'm in charge of this house!

You're coming with me!

I am not!

Hold it!

What do you want?

Miss Kikuno wants you to give her that money-box.

The hell I will!

You think that coward'll get you out of here?






It's over.

I took care of him.

I can't stomach a man like that!

What are you talking about? Where are you going to go now?

To the magistrate.



Run for it!

Are you going to throw away your life over a man like that?

Get out of here!

Go to Osaka!

Come back when things cool down.

I'll look after O-Shin till then.

Go! Quickly!

I'll wait for you.

I'm counting on you, miss!

It looks like... we missed our chance to get out of here.

I'm sorry, O-Shin.

Don't be silly.

I'm fine here with you.

But it's a weird feeling, isn't it?

Everything's so quiet.

The river crest's gone by.

Now the sea's going to rise bit by bit.

Where are you going?

It's almost dark. I'll find some candles.

Good Evening

It's just a wall giving way.

It's nothing.

What are you doing?

What is it?

If worst comes to worst, we go out that skylight... onto the roof.

It looks like it's stopped rising.

It's not coming up so fast, but it's still coming up.

O-Shin, which is your best kimono?

I'll wear this one.

You'd better put on your best one, too.

We're going to die, aren't we?

Don't be silly!

But that's what they dress you in for your funeral.

Not on your life!

The water's going to ruin our clothes, so we should wear our best ones!

Now stop whimpering.

You've got to wait for Ryosuke... so get busy!

We're not going to let ourselves die here.


the Milky Way.

"It is a rough sea...

"reaching to Sado Island.

"Look! The Milky Way."

I guess growing up a samurai you learn lots of poetry.

That's a fib.

All that about me being of samurai blood, it's lies.

It's hard to come down in the world as far as I have.

It's one long, sad day after another.

You can't go on without something to prop you up.

That's what my samurai story was.

That feels better.

Now I can die with a clear conscience.

"Die"? But you said...


So we are going to die?

We'll be fine.



You on the roof!

Have you seen the people from the "Ashi no Ya"?

Miss, it's Ryosuke.




I'm coming!

O-Shin! Miss!

You really found yourself... a good one this time, O-Shin.


Hurry up! It's half-swamped already.

All right.


Quick, get in.

No. Three of us will sink that boat.

Then I'll take O-Shin and be right back.

Never mind that.

Listen to me.

You're safe now.

You're in the clear.

The sea's come and swallowed up everything.

It's like the sea's been watching... and it's come to save you.

So... get going.

And make sure you both do things right.

I know, I'll give you this.

I've been squirreling money away for years. There's lots of it here.

But, miss, you have a...

A child back in my home village? That was a lie, too.

Make a ball of your lies and knead them with tears

I'll be right back!

Don't worry about that. Hurry before the boat sinks!

Get going!

Don't make me angry!



"Good evening."

Well, here I am...

alone at last.

And it feels fine.

Directed by Kei Kumai