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Mr. Thank You (1936)

Arigatô-san (original title)
A friendly bus driver and his passengers over the duration of one journey through the mountains to the nearest train station.


Hiroshi Shimizu


Yasunari Kawabata (novel), Hiroshi Shimizu (screenplay)




Credited cast:
Ken Uehara Ken Uehara ... Arigatô-san
Ryuji Ishiyama Ryuji Ishiyama ... Gentleman with beard
Einosuke Naka Einosuke Naka ... Peddler
Michiko Kuwano Michiko Kuwano
Mayumi Tsukiji Mayumi Tsukiji
Kaoru Futaba Kaoru Futaba
Reikichi Kawamura Reikichi Kawamura ... Villager from Tokyo
Setsuko Shinobu Setsuko Shinobu
Kazuji Sakai Kazuji Sakai ... Peddler
Nagamasa Yamada Nagamasa Yamada ... Peddler
Kanji Kawahara Kanji Kawahara
Kiyoshi Aono Kiyoshi Aono ... Old countryman
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shôsuke Agata Shôsuke Agata ... Man on wake
Shôtarô Fujimatsu Shôtarô Fujimatsu ... Primary school student
Masao Hayama ... Primary school student


Mr. Thank You is the kindly young driver of a local bus traveling from poverty stricken coastal villages, over the mountains, to the town. He thanks everybody when they let his bus pass on the narrow road. Among the passengers is a worldly young woman, who flirts with the driver while trying to put the villagers in their place. There is also an embarrassed mother who is taking her virginal daughter to the train station to be sent to Tokyo, presumably to be sold. Written by Will Gilbert

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama

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Did You Know?


Ecchû owara-bushi
Sang by passengers on the bus
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User Reviews

Slight, but pretty good
24 May 2009 | by zetesSee all my reviews

Nice little Japanese comedy. Mr. Thank You is a bus driver who often brings people from the country to Tokyo. As he drives along the narrow dirt roads, he profusely thanks the farmers and such who move to the side as he passes them. At one village, he picks up a 17 year old girl and her mother. The girl is being transported to Tokyo, where her mother will sell her into prostitution. It's the Great Depression, and the family can no longer afford to support her. Over the course of the trip, Mr. Thank You becomes more and more aware of the girl's sad face. The rest of the bus chat amongst themselves, drink, smoke, whatever. The film runs about 80 minutes, and, honestly, is pretty slight. The titular character and the young girl are rather dull people. A couple of the other passengers are more interesting, but they also are generic types of people (e.g., modern woman or stuffy businessman). It's funny much of the time, and well filmed. I like seeing the Japanese countryside and its people. Japanese films of every era focus way too much on just Tokyo that it's easy to forget the rest of the country.

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Release Date:

27 February 1936 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Mr. Thank You See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Shochiku See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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