|Formats:||12 DVD, 15 Blu-ray|
|Starring:||Jinpachi Nezu, Daisuke Ryu, Yoshiko Miyazaki, Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Terao, Mieko Harada|
|Genres:||Action/Adventure, Drama, World Cinema|
|Collections:||100 Swords and Sandals Films, Awesome Asian Films, Clash!, IMDb Highest Rated, Oscar Winners, Shakespeare Adaptations, Swashbuckling, Swords|
|Run time:||2 hours 35 minutes|
|Rental release:||03 May 2004|
Most helpful review
Classic Last Shout for KurosawaBy GraftheGreatest (15 reviews) from Harrow , 19 Sep 2004
[Highly rated reviewer]Ran is Akira Kurosawa's 1985 epic adaptation of Shakespeare's King Lear. Like Lear, Ran is about a king's (in
this case ageing Japanese Lord Hidetora, played by Tatuya Nakadai) arrogance & his eventual downfall due to
Kurosawa was himself 75 when he made Ran & was perceived as a great director on the decline. The auteur of such
classics as 'The Seven Samurai', 'Rashomon' & 'Hidden Fortress' was again to prove his ditractors wrong with
this classic, sweeping samurai masterpiece. It is said Kurosawa saw something of himself in Lear, or at least
Given an R rating, his goriest movie was a critical & commercial success, proving his fear's unfounded. Even
more hard to believe was this acheivement, given he was almost blind.
Lord Hidetora, decides to divide his land between his 3 sonsToro (Akira Terao), Jiro (Jinpachi Nezu) & Saburo
(Daisuke Ryu), with the elder receiving the greater portion. Saburo sees the stupidity & folly of his father's
decision & is banished for saying so. Hidetora is then rebuffed by the other, corrupt & evil sons. A battle
ensues when Hidetora, residing at Saburo's deserted castle is attacked by the combined armies of Taro & Jiro,
who have now through their actions divorced themselves as his children. Forced to flee & wander the hills with
only his jester Kyoami (an actor merely referenced as Peter!) & faithful old assistant Tango (Masayuki Yui) he
slowly goes mad.
First Taro is killed in battle due to the machinations of Lady Kaede (Mieko Harada), seeking vengeance on
Hidetora's entire family for stealing her birthright. She then plots to marry her dead husband's brother, Jiro.
She seduces, threatens & eventually kills Jiro & finally inherits her family's castle. But even at this point
the story is not over. Saburo, the good son is kiled in battle & then Lady Kaede is murdered for her plotting
(again, another gory scene). Chaos, the direct translation of the film title is indeed what has happened as
almost all the main characters die, including Hidetora.
I liked this movie alot. The battle scenes serve their purpose but are not allowed to dominate or compensate
for good plotting & character development (did someone mention the over-hyped Tarantino?). This is a case of a
well-crafted stylised movie BUT not one of style over substance.
Kurosawa sticks to the main themes of Lear; blindness, nothingness, treachery, madness & foolishness without
the movie feeling bound by them. The last shout of a truly great director.
The dvd features were non-existent but for such a great movie this is more than forgiveable.
- Was this review helpful to you?
- (19) Yes |
- No (6)
A film from HeavenBy Edgar Jephcote from Notts, UK , 11 Oct 2007'A series of human events, viewed from Heaven' was how the director himself described this film.
Is it just me, or is this the greatest film ever made? I will simply have to buy this film and view it again, just to make sure.
Kurosawa has such a glorious vision with films. His characters are so individual always, and blends comedy and tragedy perfectly through his characters on set. He is a true genius of the arts.
A 'Must See' through and through.
Simply and truly greatBy Sam Gibbs from Ipswich, UK , 18 Jun 2007Not for the faint hearted or impatient it has to be said, but this is a true masterpiece; visually stunning from start to finish. A vast and perfect film blending all the rich drama and honour of feudal Japan with Shakespeare's matchless plot. My only problem is the lack of hope; no chinks of light in the relentless and overwhelming tragedy.
King Lear Japanese StyleBy Babchick from England , 04 Jun 2007An amazing film based on Shakespeare's greatest tragedy - King Lear. The script is based on the play, but there are significant changes (such as the gender of Lear's offspring and the omission of the Edgar/Edmund subplot). Yet, it works very well - Lear's decision to give up power sets in motion a tragic power struggle among his sons. The film deals with the same themes of responsibility and power, and the nature of violence, reaping what you sow.
The action is slow, but it really builds up to its dramatic climax, and packs a real emotional punch. The actors who play the 'Lear' role and the fool are great, especially the former; his face conveys the range of emotions, from haughty pride to absolute horror and pain.
The landscape is used very well, too. The perpetual wind really conjures up the madness of the situation itself as well as that of the characters.
BoringBy a customer from England , 13 Apr 2007Not the best Mandarin movie.
- Was this review helpful to you?
- (6) Yes |
- No (10)
Wo!By a customer from Derby, UK , 06 Mar 2007massive in scale when it gets going, OTT performances all round and unfeasable blood squirting, one every cinema fan needs to see