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Ran (1985)

 -  Action | Drama | War  -  1 June 1985 (Japan)
8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 63,305 users   Metascore: 90/100
Reviews: 220 user | 122 critic | 11 from Metacritic.com

An elderly lord abdicates to his three sons, and the two corrupt ones turn against him.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Title: Ran (1985)

Ran (1985) on IMDb 8.3/10

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Top 250 #136 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 29 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Akira Terao ...
Jinpachi Nezu ...
Daisuke Ryû ...
Mieko Harada ...
Yoshiko Miyazaki ...
Hisashi Igawa ...
Pîtâ ...
Masayuki Yui ...
Kazuo Katô ...
Norio Matsui ...
Shumenosuke Ogura
Toshiya Ito ...
Mondo Naganuma
Kenji Kodama ...
Samon Shirane
Takashi Watanabe
Mansai Nomura ...
Tsurumaru (as Takeshi Nomura)
Edit

Storyline

A story of greed, a lust for power, and ultimate revenge. The Great Lord Hidetora Ichimonji has decided to step aside to make room for the younger blood of his three sons, Taro, Jiro, and Saburo, the Lord's only wish now being to live out his years as an honored guest in the castle of each of his sons in turn. While the older two sons flatter their father, the youngest son attempts to warn him of the folly of expecting the three sons to remain united; enraged at the younger son's attempt to point out the danger, the father banishes him. True to the younger son's warning, however, the oldest Son soon conspires with the second son to strip The Great Lord of everything, even his title. Written by Bill albers.bill@gmail.com

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

power | greed | blood | revenge | castle | See All (214) »

Genres:

Action | Drama | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

1 June 1985 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Ran  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$11,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,567 (USA) (30 June 2000)

Gross:

$116,872 (USA) (17 September 2010)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A scene which required an entire field to be sprayed gold was filmed but left out of the final film during editing. See more »

Goofs

During the battle at the third castle, there is a sequence where Hidetora emerges from the castle at the top of a flight of stairs and confronts enemy soldiers ascending the stairs. When he retreats, his bodyguards suddenly appear and retreat with him, even though they were not present moments earlier. See more »

Quotes

Kyoami: A serpent's egg is white and pure. A bird's is speckled and soiled.
Hidetora: This is a castle... Here's a wall.
Kyoami: The bird left the speckled egg for the white.
Hidetora: Strange...
Kyoami: The egg cracks; out comes a snake.
Hidetora: Empty space above the wall. Why?
Kyoami: The bird is gobbled by the snake.
Hidetora: Where am I? Who am I?
Kyoami: Stupid bird!
See more »

Connections

Version of King Lear (1916) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
The Greatest Shakespeare Film
31 March 2004 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

Throughout his career Kurosawa strove to achieve what he called "real cinema", proclaiming that "in all [his] films, there's [only] three or four minutes" of such quality. Many would argue that he was his greatest critic. For if not in "Seven Samurai", then definitely in "Ikiru" and if not in "High and Low", then definitely in "Rashomon" he must have achieved this plateau of greatness. Well, if not in any of his other films, then definitely in "Ran" Kurosawa finally came to the apex of cinematic artistry. With the both lyrical and grandiose tone of its craft, its beautifully spare imagery, its haunting score by Toru Takemitsu, and its lead Tatsuya Nakadai's masterful understated performance, "Ran" is perhaps the most fully realized epic ever made.

The tale, which is an adaptation of Shakespeare's "King Lear", begins as Lord Hidetora Ichimonji and his court are out hunting. During a break in the hunt, Hidetora proclaims his adbication from the hight seat of the Great Lord and bestows his lands unto his three sons, dividing them up equally. He declares his oldest to be his successor in power. When his youngest son and one of his faithful nobles, express their concerns on this idea, Hidetora foolishly banishes them both, mistaking their advice as insolence. With this opening scene, the peaces are aligned and soon 'chaos' as the film is aptly named will break out throughout the land. From here, we see the downfall of Hidetora and all those who surround him. The film retains all the themes of the original play, but also thanks to Kurosawa's own input addresses a slew of even more varied ideas. Like Shakespeare, Kurosawa is greatly interested in the responsibility of the leader and the hypocrisies and ironies of an autocratic system. The most obvious though not the central theme in the whole film is war, and Kurosawa explores this theme to its full extent throughout the film. In perhaps the most grandiose battle scene every filmed, he demonstrates the destructive consequences and the paradoxical beauty of conflict.

Here, Kurosawa implements the camera with masterful skill not once employing the editing/photography tricks and gimmicks so often seen in films (even the good ones) today. This director has an awareness of the past and the history of film, but also the creative spontaneity of a true genius. In "Ran", he focuses on the more methodically simple yet artistically complex montage of Eisenstein, and on the strict compositions of Ozu. He employs the most basic and yet most artistic of techniques. Each shot is planned to precision, and each cut is made for a purpose. The coreagraphy and blocking of each scene is simple and powerful, and Kurosawa allows the actors to play out these scenes without the intrusion of the camera or the editor. Thus, the director prevents the style from eclipsing the already powerful material he has to work with. Simply put, "Ran" is a masterpiece that flows and develops like an opera, from its forebodingly peaceful ouverture to its bloody Shakespearean heart until its final, quietly subdued, and sorrowful denouement.


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