Sunday, August 29, 2010

THRONE OF BLOOD (Japanese) (1957)

One of the brilliant and breathtaking screen adaptation of Macbeth by Akira Kurosawa in his signature Samurai tradition. Valiant captain Washizu blinded by ambition, driven by his wife Asaji’s instigation and spirit’s prediction murdered the warlord Tsuzuki, seize the kingdom and then starts the psychological damnation full of inescapable guilt, paranoia, betrayal, bloodshed leading it to the final ruin. Kurosawa almost faithfully kept the essence of Bard’s one of the great tragedy in all key scenes- prophecy by haunted spirit, Lady Asaji’s ear poisoning, Miki’s frightening ghost image at celebration party, Lady Asaji’s attempt to wash the bloodstain of her hands and absolutely awesome climax where finally as per the prediction of the spirit, the cobweb forest literally begins to move and comes to Cobweb Castle determining the doomsday of the protagonist.

Great directors breed great collaboration with their favorite actors where both contribute and correspond something unparallel to world cinema. Toshiro Mifun’s collaboration with Kurosawa turned him into an iconic star status of Japanese cinema. Undoubtedly he’s amazing actor with his gifted dramatic and hysterical expressions which he carried as Samurai. His extraordinary death scene stuck with arrows all over body is truly unforgettable image. The grand epical visuals captured on canvas with natural light are always aesthetic treat for any Kurosawa fans. The haunting atmospheric elements of mist, thunderstorm and heavy rain in B&W frames shows his penchant for expressionistic shots. “For me shooting only means getting something to edit”, said the auteur.

Ratings- Does it need when Kurosawa combines Shakespeare?

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