Following World War II, a retired professor approaching his autumn years finds his quality of life drastically reduced in war-torn Tokyo. Denying despair, he pursues writing and celebrates his birthday with his adoring students.
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 »
Episodes from the lives of a group of Tokyo slum-dwellers: Rokkuchan, an intellectually disabled boy who brings meaning and routine to his life by driving an imaginary streetcar; children who support their parents by scrounging or by tedious and ill-paying endeavours; schemers who plot or dream of escaping the shackles of poverty. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The movie was made as the first feature of the Committee of the Four Knights, a group founded by four of Japan's greatest directors: Akira Kurosawa, Keisuke Kinoshita, Masaki Kobayashi and Kon Ichikawa. According to a interview with Ichikawa, they wanted their first picture to be a hit. When this film told a story deemed too depressing and was subsequently a failure with audiences, the group disbanded and never made another film. The movie's failure also contributed to Kurosawa's suicide attempt one year later. See more »
This, and "Hidden fortress" are the Kurosawa's that are most dear to me. I don't hand out 10's like candy, but this certainly deserved it, if anything. Even though it's quite long (like all Kurosawa's pretty much are) it concurred the problem which bugs me with most of his films; the storyline is often too loose and slowly evolving, containing scenes that are unnecessary or just lenghtened too much without any real purpose to the storyline or the character description. Dodesukaden delivered to me the same experience that for example "Hidden fortress" did; despite its lenght, there wasn't a single minute I would cut out.
This is also a very unusual Kurosawa film in a way, it has no storyline, but many little independent stories which are based more to the character description than storyline, unlike any other Kurosawa-film I have seen so far. It also leans much on the dialogue, which he uses brilliantly (especially in the story between the father and the son planning their "new house").
Still the thing that makes this one a masterpiece is how the subject being so tragic as it is, is managed to be described so humanely and sympathetically, without pointing fingers at anybody at any point. From the beginning to the end it delivers the whole emotional scale from laughter to tears in perfect balance.
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