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Question for fellow Kurosawa fans


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7 replies to this topic

#1 of 8 OFFLINE   doug zdanivsky

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Posted April 03 2011 - 05:59 AM

I was ordering my Blu-ray of Ran, and I got to thinking..  I always tell people how pretty much all the common themes in films today boil down to Kurosawa films..


Ie. Story told from several different perspectives?  Rashomon.  Villiage saved by wandering hero(es)?  Seven Samurai.  Rogue plays 2 sides against each other, gets beat up/banished, has crisis of concience, returns to save day?  Yojimbo, etc, etc.  From Sci-fi to Westerns, the plots all have those common denominators..


But I wonder..   Was he really the originator, or was HE himself drawing on themes from film or literature?


Obviously Ran was an interpretation of W.S's King Lear, but can anyone cite other examples?


Thanks for any and all replies!



#2 of 8 OFFLINE   Greg_S_H

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Posted April 03 2011 - 07:29 AM

Yojimbo was based on Dashiell Hammett's Red Harvest (novel).



#3 of 8 OFFLINE   doug zdanivsky

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Posted April 03 2011 - 04:25 PM

Googled, thanks!


Any others?



#4 of 8 OFFLINE   Stefan Andersson

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Posted April 03 2011 - 07:09 PM

Some examples of literary material used by Kurosawa:

Throne of Blood - Macbeth, Shakespeare

High and Low - King´s Ransom, Ed McBain

The Idiot - The Idiot, Fyodor Dostoevsky

The Lower Depths - The Lower Depths, play by Maxim Gorky

Rashomon - In the Grove, short story by Ryonosuke Akutagawa

Dersu Uzala - novel by Vladimir Arsenyev


Many Kurosawa films are based on Japanese novels or short stories that are not very well known outside Japan. Check the listings on www.imdb.com for each Kurosawa film to get titles/authors for each text. Then search on Amazon or Google.



#5 of 8 OFFLINE   doug zdanivsky

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Posted April 04 2011 - 12:06 PM

*slaps forehead*  That's a good idea, Stefan, thanks!



#6 of 8 OFFLINE   norrow5210

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Posted April 04 2011 - 05:20 PM

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#7 of 8 OFFLINE   Martin Teller

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Posted April 05 2011 - 06:15 AM

Kurosawa was also heavily influenced by John Ford.



#8 of 8 OFFLINE   doug zdanivsky

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Posted April 05 2011 - 07:00 AM



Originally Posted by Martin Teller 

Kurosawa was also heavily influenced by John Ford.


I'll look him up, thanks!