A made for TV movie about a Japanese farm family.


wositelec, you said,

"Perhaps it is hidden in IMDB filters and it wasn't too popular."

That could very well be the case.

OK. It is very strange situation, because I used various keywords in Google or IMDB (advanced search), but no effect. I found only "Farewell to Manzanar", but it is another plot. There is a farm thread, but only at end (according to Wikipedia):
Jeanne retreats into herself, and nearly drops out of school; however, when her father moves the family to a berry farm in San Jose she decides to make another attempt at school life. Her homeroom nominates her queen of the school's annual spring carnival, and for the election assembly, she leaves her hair loose and wears an exotic sarong. Although the teachers try to prevent her from winning, her friend Leonard Rodriguez exposes the teachersí plot and ensures her victory. Jeanne's father, however, is furious that she won the election by flaunting her sexuality before American boys. He forces her to take Japanese dance lessons, but she soon quits.
I think that it is extremely tough to find, similar like several "my" movies, because we are dealing with an extremely rare movie from United States or Canada. I don't reckon that it is TV movie made in Japan, if you remember that actors spoke English.
I'm looking for prison movie:

Good points wositelec, We'll see what turns up.

Are you sure that your movie is American? Maybe it was English dubbing?

"Where Spring Comes Late" (1970) has similar plot.

I looked at the story line of "When spring comes late". That's not it. As I remember it, they we're well-spoken actors using English. Obviously, everyone was North American. Since the setting was in the U.S, on American TV, I'm calling it a US film. The Japanese family of actors in this film were native English speakers, is my guess.

If we could get in databases of NBC, CBS and ABC of their made for TV movies, around 1970, we might find it. Their archives of movies. Just a thought.

Ok. Are you sure that you don't mixed different memoirs and movies? I had very similar and strange situation, eg. when I watched a Czechoslovakian movie "Seclusion Near a Forest " (1976) as a child and I was sure that it is Polish comedy movie. Unfortunately, I found this a month ago and it was Czechoslovakian movie.

Perhaps it is mix of different movies or something like"The Hawaiians" (1970) - but here is Charlton Heston, so it is next popular actor.

When the Japanese arrive on the island Whip takes as a mistress the educated self-sufficient Fumiko (Miko Mayama). The circle of interbreeding and cultural infusion is complete when Noel marries Mei Lei (Virginia Lee), Nyuk Tsinís only daughter.

Itís a lot more melodramatic than that, to be sure, Whip at odds with his family, Purity sending him bananas by denying him sex after Noelís birth, and then withdrawing from his life. Various characters flit in and out, like the alcoholic well-digger Overpeck (Don Knight), and the tale embraces, like Diamond Head, the period when the United States annexed Hawaii.
"Come See the Paradise" (1990) is some similar, but it isn't the same like your plot.
The film takes place during WWII and like "Snow Falling on Cedars" (another great story about the anti-Japanse movement during this time) is about an American, who falls in love with a Japanese women. The two fall in love regardless of their race backgrounds.

Wositelec, I don't think I got it wrong. Obviously 1970 was 54 years ago. We'll see how things turn out, my friend.

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We are having so much trouble finding it, that I am beginning to suspect that there has been some lapse in memory over the past 54 years. So I understand you watched this on television in about 1970, correct? What country would you have been in when you watched it?

KEVP, I was in the U.S.A. It was on one of three stations, ABC, CBS or NBC.

Registered User
There are two things here that I think are worth focusing on. In 1970, it would still be unusual (not impossible) to have an interracial romance in an American made-for-TV movie. At the time a romance between a "white" American and a Japanese-American would be considered "interracial". That is a detail that should make this movie stand out, if you are remembering it correctly. (In fact, around 1970, there were very few opportunities for Asian-American actors at all, so any film or TV with significant Asian-American characters should stand out)
The other thing that stands out in your description is picking up radio signals on a metal comb. I don't think I have ever seen that.
These are probably the details we should be focusing on to find this movie.

Registered User
But do remember that there were a LOT of these made-for-TV movies, and many have been completely forgotten and never released on video.

Thanks KEVP, good points.

I got a suggestion that it is an episode from "American Playhouse" s06e10.

"Based on two short stories by Hisaye Yamamoto this play details the domestic tension between an illiterate Japanese immigrant farmer and his educated wife in 1930s California".

I got a suggestion that it is an episode from "American Playhouse" s06e10.

"Based on two short stories by Hisaye Yamamoto this play details the domestic tension between an illiterate Japanese immigrant farmer and his educated wife in 1930s California".

Thanks wositelec and OHforums,

This looks like a very interesting movie, I'm going to make a point to watch it. Having said that, this movie was released in 1991, well after my teenage years. This is what I'm talking about though, Japanese/American actors who speak English well. We're getting closer though.

It is very strange, because this movie contains romance with farmer's wife and two kids. It has low video quality too, so it isn't similar to 90s, but looks like older movie.

Your points are reasonable wositelec.

OK. The age doesn't match, but everything else looks like this. It's on Youtube, but I don't know if it's the complete version.

Let me know if you are sure that it isn't.

Thank you wositelec, the story line is exactly the same as the movie I'm thinking of. There are some differences, perhaps I don't remember as well as I thought. Could this have been released around 1970 originally, and then re-released in the early 90s again? Hisaye Yamamoto must have written both works. I'm going to research this and get back to you. Many thanks friend!

Ok, the actress who played the girl/daughter in this movie, Tricia Joe, was born in 1978. This means this movie was made about 1990. Unfortunately, in 2021 she was killed in a car accident at the age of 43. For me to have seen this movie around 1970 tells me there was an earlier production. There are some differences I've noticed for sure. The radio thing for one. Also the woman told her husband that she was pregnant while they were in bed together, I seem to remember. This 1991 release has all the main parts that I remember, just twisted in a somewhat different way. Thank you wositelec for finding this movie.