16 April 2013 6:45 AM, PDT | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

Teinosuke Kinugasa’s glorious and vibrant masterpiece, Gate of Hell, excitingly receives a Criterion digital remastering this month, a certifiable occasion because this not only recreates the film’s initial visual beauties, but the first time it will be widely available stateside (cinephiles were only previously privy to Eureka Entertainment’s UK Blu-ray release). Winner of the top prize at Cannes, as well as the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film and Costume Design, Martin Scorsese names the film among one of the most beautiful color films of all time.

Based on the play Kesa’s Husband by Ken Kikuchi, the setting is 1159 Ad, known as the Heiji Era, and a rebellion has been staged against the royal family. Under siege, it is decided that a decoy must be used to distract the rebel army, and Lady Kesa (Machiko Kyo) assumes the responsibility, carted away by a group of samurais. »

- Nicholas Bell

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