Yuzo and his fiancée Masako spend their Sunday afternoon together, trying to have a good time on just thirty-five yen. They manage to have many small adventures, especially because Masako's... See full summary »
After a battle with rival criminals, a small-time gangster is treated by an alcoholic doctor in post-war Japan. The doctor diagnoses the young gangster's tuberculosis, and convinces him to begin treatment for it. The two enjoy an uneasy friendship until the gangster's former boss is released from prison and seeks to take over his gang once again. The ailing young man loses his status as gang boss and becomes ostracised, and eventually confronts his former boss in a battle to the death. Written by
Bernard Keane <BKeane2@email.dot.gov.au>
The performance of Toshirô Mifune as the violent young gangster, Matsunaga (his fourth overall and first in a Kurosawa movie), was so powerful and memorable that, according to director Akira Kurosawa, many people in Japan (and presumably elsewhere) falsely assume that the title, "Drunken Angel," was intended to refer to Matsunaga. But Kurosawa had actually intended the title character to be the alcoholic doctor, Sanada (played by Takashi Shimura), who treats Matsunaga, because, for the filmmaker, he is an "angel" for attempting to save the gangster from his illness and violent lifestyle, despite his own weakness for alcohol. See more »
When Matsunaga throws the Doctor out of the "Bolero", we see him fall on his back. His shirtsleeves are rolled up, so his forearms are bare: his left arm does not make contact with the ground. The next scene is of him cleaning a wound in his left forearm, below the elbow. See more »
A very, very vivid film from Japanese legend, Akira Kurosawa. The Japanese town that is the setting for "Drunken Angel" is vividly captured by Kurosawa, and the filthy swamp that separates the doctor from the filthiness of the town is brilliant. Toshiro Mifune plays a tuberculosis stricken gangster who is slowly won over, despite his vicious pride, by the caring but sarcastic doctor. The swamp is a reflection of the corruption in the town and in one of the first scenes a group of children are seen playing in it. Kurosawa's way of foreshadowing these children's future since the town is controlled by the immoral gangsters. With the arrival of Okadu, a released convict and gangster, and struggles with his health, Mifune struggles through conflicts of soul which are brilliantly metaphored by Kurosawa. A great drama with some brilliant commentary about post-WW2 Japan. Solid characters carry with film about typical with the Doctor being an unforgettable creation and Toshiro Mifune giving a powerful performance.
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