Ed note: For the next several weeks, composer and film aficionado Lewis Saul has agreed to supply us with in-depth commentary about the films of Akira Kurosawa, now showing in an extended festival at the Film Forum. Even if you're unable to stop by the Forum, we think Lew's insights will deepen your appreciation of these important movies.PLAYING January 23rd at The Film Forum
This is Kurosawa's seventh film.
For a detailed frame-by-frame analysis of this film, click here.
That's pretty detailed, so I won't have a whole lot more to say here -- I'm hoping you'll go there to check it all out...
I like to make up little images with quotes from the films that I've analyzed on my blog. This is the image I made for this film:
Dr. Sanada (Takashi Shimura)'s cynical words seems quite appropriate for this extremely cynical film about life during the Occupation.
I enjoy telling the story about my history with seeing this film:
The first print I ever saw was on a VHS I got from Hollywood Attic where the subtitles were in shaky white type which completely disappeared when anything light-colored appeared on the screen! It was almost impossible to sit through. Then, Home Vision came out with a VHS that had the same terrible print, but slightly better subtitles; and then finally -- Criterion to the rescue! It's like watching it in the theater now.
- There are 12 wipes in this film; eight horizontal (seven left and one right); one vertical (top to bottom) and three diagonal wipes (one top right to bottom left and two top left to bottom right)