Akira Kurosawa Recommendations

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Keith M., Oct 15, 2004.

  1. Keith M.

    Keith M. Second Unit

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    I recently purchased, watched and enjoyed the following Akira Kurosawa dvd's:

    Dreams
    Seven Samurai
    Hidden Fortress
    Yojimbo
    Sanjuro
    Ran
    Ikiru
    Rashomon
    Throne of Blood


    I will eventually see them all, but would like recommendations to which titles to watch next?

    Thanks in advance...
     
  2. Haggai

    Haggai Producer

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    I'd suggest Stray Dog, which is on DVD from Criterion.
     
  3. Michael Alex

    Michael Alex Extra

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    If you liked Ikiru, you'll probably want to check "The Lower Depths", "High and Low" and "Red Beard", the Criterion versions of which are all exceptional. It would seem that many people with more than a passing interest in Kurosawa agree that his non-Samurai pictures are just as important from an artistic point of view as his more popular ones, if not even more so.
    And I'll second Stray Dog, another impressive achievement at a relatively early point in his career.
     
  4. Chris Cheese

    Chris Cheese Stunt Coordinator

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    My three favorites are Seven Samurai, Red Beard and Stray Dog, so get the two you don't have next. They're both amazing. I personally found Red Beard to be a much more emotionally-affecting film than Ikiru (though I do really enjoy both).
     
  5. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden Producer
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    I would recommend "Dersu Uzala", "High and Low", and "Red Beard" next.

    Regards,
     
  6. Keith M.

    Keith M. Second Unit

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    Yeah, I was leaning towards Dersu Uzala, but was concerned about the quality of the dvd...

    Stray Dog looks like it will be next...


    Thanks!!
     
  7. ArthurMy

    ArthurMy Supporting Actor

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    Cannot recommend High and Low enough - a brilliant movie. The Criterion DVD is not optimal (non-enhanced and slightly wrong ratio), but the image quality is quite okay (I have the SE DVD from Japan - no subs unfortunately, but the image quality is superb and I know the film well enough so that I can live without the subs).
     
  8. Stephen_L

    Stephen_L Supporting Actor

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    Gotta echo "High and Low" as a great choice. A wonderful bit of Japanese film noir with Toshiro Mifune in a business suit! Can you imagine! Add a story with some real moral complexity and you have a winner.
     
  9. Haggai

    Haggai Producer

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    Lotta Red Beard fans here, but I've got do a little hatin' and say that I didn't like that movie. It's the only Kurosawa I've seen that didn't work for me. But Stephen Prince's commentary on that DVD is really damn good.
     
  10. Jeff Swearingen

    Jeff Swearingen Second Unit

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    My vote is for High and Low. Actually now I think about it a while I bought a couple Kurosawa DVDs that I haven't watched or opened yet. Be back in a few hours...
     
  11. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

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    Well, obviously see them ALL!

    I will also recommend the film Runaway Train (Jon Voight, Eric Roberts, I think 1985ish). It's done by russian director Andrei Konchalovsky, based on a Kurosawa screenplay. It's a marvelous film. The strength is there from the screenplay, but what I love about it is that Konchalovsky didn't try to copy or make a Kurosawa film as I've seen with some other films made from Kurosawa scripts. It's very much his film, and it's just wonderfully done, and I think Voight's performance here alone makes him one of my favorite actors. Simple, incredible film.

    Dersu Uzala, just see it, see them all, there are some that I don't even think are on video (or impossible to find). Don't let quality be an obstacle. Dersu is one of my all-time favorites, and as a kind of love story it's probably the best ever. I just picked up a Region 3 Dersu Uzala, it's 3-discs the US cut, and then a longer Russian cut that I've never seen. The PQ looks promising, I'm very excited to see this longer version that spans two discs. Looks like there's also a good bit of extras in B&W and such about the film.
     
  12. Deepak Shenoy

    Deepak Shenoy Supporting Actor

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    Lower Depths and Red Beard are my personal favorites. I would recommend High and Low too, but unfortunately the Criterion DVD is not up to snuff. Criterion will eventually reissue this title and so if possible I would rent it for now.

    -D
     
  13. Elijah Sullivan

    Elijah Sullivan Supporting Actor

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    Red Beard comes in right after Seven Samurai, Ran and maybe even before Rashomon, in my book, but it's true that it's one of his most difficult film. (That's why I like it.) It's a serious drama with the single best Toshiro Mifune performance ever.

    High & Low and Stray Dog are two of the greatest film noir on the planet. Top 10, absolutely. I give the edge to High & Low although they are both nail-biters with knockout endings.

    If you liked Ran, his Kagemusha is in a similar vein, and utterly amazing. The Criterion set for this film is one of their best.

    No matter what you

    Enjoy!
     
  14. Lord Dalek

    Lord Dalek Cinematographer

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    A lot of his lesser known pictures such as Dodeskaden and Rhapsody in August are also very good.
     

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