The films of one of the most influential directors in motion picture history will be the subject of a special retrospective coming to Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra this year. Curated by beloved film critic and former Sydney Film Festival director David Stratton, the Essential Kurosawa lineup will showcase ten iconic films from Japan's legendary Akira Kurosawa, including several efforts that could contest the title of greatest film of all time.
The retrospective — which is a collaboration between Sydney Film Festival, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Melbourne, and the National Film and Sound Archive in Canberra — will span almost the full length of Kurosawa's incredible career, from his groundbreaking Rashomon (1950) to his sweeping feudal war epic Ran (1985). Further highlights include Seven Samurai (1954), The Hidden Fortress (1958), Yojimbo (1961) and Kagemusha (1980). A number of titles will screen on specially imported 35mm film prints courtesy of The Japan Foundation and Toho Co.
"The best of Kurosawa's films possess a grandeur combined with a common touch," said Stratton in a statement accompanying the announcement. "No-one filmed action scenes like he did – his use of multiple cameras, long lenses and intricate editing combined to make these sequences unforgettable."
The films in Essential Kurosawa will screen at ACMI in Melbourne from May 26 to June 8 (ticket here), Dendy Opera Quays and the Art Gallery of New South Wales as part of Sydney Film Festival from June 7–18 (tickets here), and the NSFA in Canberra from June 14-30 (tickets here).