The story is about the hardships that a family has to face especially that of the mother. Quite coincidental that I am watching this on the eve of Mother's day! A search on the Internet Movie Database shows more than a dozen films with the same title!
Read from "One Hundred Years of Japanese Cinema" by Donald Ritchie that this is director, Mikio Naruse's, happiest film. The DVD cover with two smiling faces seems to convey the same message too! I think I agree with the comment based on the few films from the director that I have watched so far. The playful kids and the cheerful teenage daughter who is in love with a bakery assistant help to liven up the atmosphere while we see how the mother struggles to keep the family together. Good storyline and nicely executed!
Internet Movie Database Link