In "The Only Son," a single mother decides to work herself to the bone so her son can have a shot at a better life, but when the two reunite years later, the pair are forced to confront the ultimate wisdom of her decision. "There Was a Father" also mirrors this scenario: a father sends his son off to school, but must move far away to support his education. Much later in life, the two spend a week together and examine the choices that defined their lives.
Ozu is one of the greatest filmmakers the world has produced; if you need proof, this DVD box set should do the trick. From two ever-so-simple scenarios, he spins worlds of authentic, complex emotion. Ozu's trademark filmmaking style was always pure and clean (stationary camera, geometric compositions); paired with these tales of the elemental love of parent for child, the results are overwhelming. Watch them together for best effect — these are masterpieces.