For all the entries, click here! Trump was our last shot. One cannot help but wonder what sort of performance—and character—Hara might’ve evoked had Kurosawa been allowed to shoot the script he wanted.” But what was the script he (and Eijiro Hisaita) wanted and didn’t get? I really appreciate everyone’s comments here with respect to a very significant fim of Kurosawa (including lawless’ response to me whose last paragraph includes a “slam” that maybe was deserved). seems to me to be a very, very crass generalization. Most of what’s presented here is only my opinions or observations; any facts that I share I will try to present along with the sources where I’ve found them. I haven’t watched in a few years, I must give it another look. It's explicitly based on a real event and inherently political due to its subject matter. Evil characters can be strong (Throne of Blood, Red Beard, Ran). As for the topic of women in Kurosawa’s films that others have raised, I think his typical label of a “masculine director” is a little overblown and probably the result of his most popular films having been samurai films. Side or secondary characters can be strong (every female character in Seven Samurai, for example; the women in Sanjuro and the many of the women in Dodesukaden; the tubercular girl in Drunken Angel). No Regrets for Our Youth (わが青春に悔なし, Waga seishun ni kuinashi) is a 1946 film written and directed by Akira Kurosawa. I believe that he saw that the Occupation era offered no such respect, and therefore no opportunity for the country to heal. Thinking about it a bit more, I wonder if there isn’t a way to combine Patrick’s and Yoshimoto’s analyses. Great analysis, thanks for sharing. One could argue, along Patrick’s excellent reasoning, that Yukie is an inherently apolitical character. Yoshimoto himself places the film very squarely at the centre of a socio-political discussion of war responsibility, postwar guilt and victim consciousness. Strength need not be the sine qua non for male or female characters. If my suggestion earlier as to the reason is wrong or simplistic, then I think maybe Ugetsu might be closer to the answer with the comment “I think his [Kurosawa’s] primary concern was the structure of the narrative, not the fine points of character” If Ugetsu is correct, could it be that such a concern would naturally gravitate to an emphasis on men in leading roles over women? His best-known films remain his samurai epics Seven Samurai and Yojimbo, but his intimate dramas, such as Ikiru and High and Low, are just as searing. That’s a very interesting take and offers a lot of food for thought. No Regrets for Our Youth. This is not of course meant to deprive critics from having the fun of making the attempt. Even though Japanese critics and intellectuals reviled No Regrets for Our Youth and its heroine, Kurosawa said, "This woman I wanted to show as the new Japan. The Beatles are Coming! Kurosawa would subsequently gain international fame with Rashomon, a breakthrough in nonlinear narrative and sumptuous visuals. It is based on the 1933 Takigawa incident. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. On a basic level, the making of every film is restricted in one way or another. This post is part of the “Try It, You’ll Like It!” Blogathon, hosted by Sister Celluloid and Movies Silently, where we write about “gateway films” that might bring non-classic-film lovers into the fold! A good analysis of a film similarly is not the film itself, but it offers insights and guides others to take note of aspects that they may otherwise have not noticed. I have no regrets for ferociously supporting him. Personally, I tend to have a pretty selfish reason for engaging in all of this. For a different perspective on Kurosawa and female characters, see this prior discussion. I too am definitely a firm believer in art having the ability to share ideas far beyond the common linguistic domain. Ann Coulter. Interconnected nonfiction stories about being an American post-graduate and entering a deeply broken world. And then we have the textbook example of an inspiring woman in a Kurosawa film. I certainly prefer him playing to his interests rather than doing movies he didn’t have his heart in. My comments on film on this website are only my personal thoughts about films I’ve watched and felt motivated to review. Any thoughts on why he didn’t have more women like her in his films? After all, he wasn’t interested in domestic drama and he wanted to say things about a society largely dominated by men. As that truck rolls down the country road, her face bears a trauma that remains unresolved, a wound that has not really been attended to. Instead of setting out to atone for this, he starts looking for a way to blow all the money he’s saved up. As for strong main characters, there’s the lead in The Most Beautiful, the fiancee in One Wonderful Sunday (the couple is engaged, not married, which gives a different rationale to her refusing his advances), the grandmother in August Rhapsody and Hara’s character in The Idiot as well as in No Regrets for our Youth. Dance by No Regrets For Our Youth, released 03 December 2007 The reason there can be no regrets is because proper reflection is not permitted since both the present and the past are dictated by someone else, the winners. I myself have never subscribed to the notion that Kurosawa was closed-minded, semi-misogynistic, what-have-you, when it came to women in his films. No Regrets for Our Youth: A Retrospective on Kurosawa’s Postwar Gem. Following a personal breakdown in the late sixties, Kurosawa rebounded by expanding his dark brand of humanism into new stylistic territory, with films such as Kagemusha and Ran, visionary, color, epic ruminations on modern man and nature. Like Patrick I want to track down Yoshimoto on Regrets – thanks for the reference. The Birth of Beatlemania in America, Follow It's All Too Much on, The International Buster Keaton Society-The Damfinos. Jack Kevorkian. Speaking of which, was it not a group of women who, at the beginning of the film, had the good idea of turning a cesspool into a playground, which subsequently becomes Watanabe’s mission? However, with respect, I am not sure you both adequately addressed Chomei’s question which I find fascinating: why Kurosawa did not have more women like Hara’s character Yukie (very strong, not typical) in his movies. Arguably the most celebrated Japanese filmmaker of all time, Akira Kurosawa had a career that spanned from the Second World War to the early nineties and that stands as a monument of artistic, entertainment, and personal achievement. What you have said, Villi, about Yoshimoto’s approach would appear to be consistent with what I have observed as a trend in the study of Japanese cinema recently of paying more attention to the “context” of the times, political and otherwise in which the director lived, in studying his work – this contrasts, perhaps, with a more “purist” approach of a Richie. Perhaps also Kurosawa’s temperament and the kind of people he could get along with. The chapter on No Regrets for Our Youth is one of the longest in the book, and he passionately argues against “the depoliticized rewriting of Kurosawa’s film narrative and the image of Kurosawa as a middle-of-the-road humanist”, which he sees Donald Richie’s analysis of the film effectively doing.

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