Dir. Akira Kurosawa. 1950, 88 mins. 35mm. With Toshiro Mifune, Machiko Kyo, Masayuki Mori, Takashi Shimura. Akira Kurosawa’s groundbreaking narrative experiment is rightly remembered for its fragmented story, in which a rape and murder are told from four different points of view. Yet the film would never have had the impact it did if not for the stunning cinematography by Kazuo Miyagawa, who harnesses nature—rain, wind, sunlight, and trees—for unforgettable and evocative imagery. The film also made a star of Mifune, who combines menace and sex appeal.
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