Masato Harada, who once directed Hollywood-style entertainments such as 1989’s sci-fi actioner “Ganheddo (Gunhed)” and the America-set 1993 road movie “Painted Desert,” has since made a specialty of dramas about Japanese men at work. Based on true events and packed with incident, they made life in a large Japanese organization look rather swashbuckling and macho. Examples include “Jubaku: Spellbound” (1999), whose subject was big-league corporate corruption, “The Choice of Hercules” (2002), in which hordes of police faced off against a small band of radicals, and “The Climbers High” (2008), a thriller about a provincial newspaper’s pursuit of a big disaster story.

So I was somewhat surprised to hear that Harada had directed “Waga Haha no Ki (Chronicle of My Mother),” a family drama based on novelist Yasushi Inoue’s 1977 memoir of his troubled relationship with his mom. But the film, despite Harada’s shout outs to the work of ho ̄mu dorama (“home drama”) master Yasujiro Ozu, carries the DNA of his earlier films, including their celebrations of the traditional male ethos.

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