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Kurosawa 101: Day Nine, 1975 - 1985

The three films featured today represented the director's ascendance to greater international acclaim, even while he struggled to find financing in Japan, where the movie industry was shriveling. All three of these films were made either in whole or in part by Soviet, American, or French financing.

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Monster Dandelions and Weeping Demons

In the early 1990s, The Hollywood Reporter picked up on an emerging ‘trend’ of what it called cinema vert -- films about ‘green issues’. Kurosawa’s Dreams, though not financed by the American studio system, fits well in this cohort, albeit as the most formally distinct example of this miniature film movement.

James Clarke
Film

Kurosawa 101: Day Eight, 1963 - 1970

These three films by Kurosawa represent the end of one phase of his career and the beginning of another. High and Low is a police procedural that is regarded as one of his greatest films, while Red Beard represented the end of his so-called "Creative Period".

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Madness and Goodness in 'Dodeskaden'

Rather than portray Dodeskaden as many have done, as the imperfect film whose failure pushed Kurosawa over the edge to a suicide attempt, one could see it instead as a cri de coeur by Kurosawa for the sort of independent production that he favored, in which the director had his freedom, both to film the way he wanted and also the freedom of the final cut.

Daniel O'Connell
Film

Kurosawa 101: Day Four, 1950 - 1952

Today's Kurosawa 101 explores two of the greatest films in Kurosawa's catalog, Rashomon -- the film that made Kurosawa and Japanese cinema known throughout the world -- and Ikiru -- perhaps the greatest film ever made about impending death.

Film

Kurosawa 101: Day Three (1949 - 1950)

Today's Kurosawa 101 films include the director's only effort at bringing a contemporary Japanese stage play to the screen (the rarely seen The Quiet Duel), a police procedural that was the finest Kurosawa film to date (Stray Dog), and a scree against tabloid journalism that resulted in one of the weakest films he would ever direct (Scandal).

Film

Kurosawa 101: Day One, 1943-1945

Over the next two weeks we will provide a brief introduction to every one of the films that Akira Kurosawa directed, from the obscure to the most celebrated, from Scandal and The Most Beautiful to Seven Samurai and Ran.

Reviews

Dodes'ka-Den

Kurosawa’s camera turns an intense, voyeuristic gaze on the residents of the junkyard that is at once sympathetic and unflinching.

Ian Chant
Reviews

Ikiru

The story is deeply affecting and life-affirming, but the plot is only a small part of what makes Ikiru so masterful.

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