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>
In early drafts of the script, the story was almost entirely about Doctor Sanada (Takashi Shimura) and Matsunaga the thug (Toshirô Mifune) was a small supporting part. However, Akira Kurosawa was so impressed with Mifune's performance that he greatly increased the Matsunaga part, to the point where the Doctor and Matsunaga are almost equal in screen-time. See more »
When Matsunaga wakes up in Nanae's bed, he has a wet compress on his chest, under the pajama shirt. When he sits up and takes it off, it is on top of his shirt. See more »
Fall in love for someone like me, I may be scruffy but you get free medical care.
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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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