Yasujiro Ozu's I Was Born, But... zeroes in on the lives of young boys, studying their behavior and the trouble they get themselves into when their parents aren't looking—which is frequent, if this film is to be believed. It's about the competition that is natural between boys, and the ridiculous lengths they will go to in order to prove themselves superior to one another. In one sequence, one of the two main boys eats a sparrow's egg so that he will be become big and strong like the local big kid. He also feeds an egg to his dog to make him big, too. The dog gets sick, and when the veterinarian prescribes some medication, the boys think that they need to take some as well. It's these sort of little whimsical details that make a film like this so charming, yet still utterly believable and relatable. I can recall getting into little scraps with the neighborhood kids, if only because of a lack of something better to do.

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