Our next offering of the season is Akira Kurosawa’s breakout movie, RASHOMON (1950). After some positive reviews, we spend lots of time on the particular visuals of the film — including the way in which things are seen through other things — and end with a discussion of what the last scene might mean in the context of the film as a whole.
Next Week’s Film
SEVEN SAMURAI (1954): you need to sign up for the BFI player for £4.99 after a week’s free trial, but if classic films aren’t your thing, then just cancel before the week is out: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Seven-Samurai-Takashi-Shimura/dp/B00P4OHWTO/ref=sr_1_1?s=instant-video&ie=UTF8&qid=1505411259&sr=1-1&keywords=seven+samurai
This Week’s Media
SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING (2017): Jon Watts, Tom Holland, Michael Keaton
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOLUME II (2017): James Gunn, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana
M. BUTTERFLY (1993): David Henry Hwang, David Cronenberg, Jeremy Irons
MEMENTO (2000): Christopher Nolan, Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss
STREET OF SHAME (1956): Kenji Mizoguchi, Yoshiko Shibaki, Machiko Kyō
ONE NIGHT AT MCCOOL’S (2001): Harald Zwart, Liv Tyler, Matt Dillon
This is a good primer on ‘the hero’s journey’, which Rob mentions early on: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hero%27s_journey. The production, music, and script on this video are terrible, but there is some useful info about the different types of camera movement! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45e1XuA-oLY There’s more on the gate in question, which lends its name to the film — as Sam discusses — here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rajōmon. Here are a couple of good books on (1) the films of Kurosawa, and (2) class and aesthetics in Japan: https://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=vdchVqMSiDEC&oi=fnd&pg=PR9&dq=influences+on+akira+kurosawa&ots=D7Tq-c1G1f&sig=7FA76g1iigwjWS1fQXEAqlM2YA4#v=onepage&q=influences%20on%20akira%20kurosawa&f=false, and https://books.google.co.uk/books?hl=en&lr=&id=10krbGkGMyoC&oi=fnd&pg=PR7&dq=class+in+japanese+history&ots=SMdOiQbPSf&sig=eAq53yCWiBvqsQE7uIJqqw_YfBQ#v=onepage&q=class%20in%20japanese%20history&f=false. Finally, here’s your regular reference to the concept of the MacGuffin, which is probably not employed in this film: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/MacGuffin.