Sunday, September 27, 2015


Gathering for shelter at a desolate city entrance, two witnesses to a vicious rape/murder recount the court testimony of the atrocious affair from the viewpoint of the perpetrator (Toshiro Mifune), his surviving victim (Machiko Kyo), her slaughtered samurai husband (Masayuki Mori) as told through a seer, and the sole witness (Takashi Shimura) to view the actual crime. By breaking free, not only from traditional cinematic narrative forms and perspective, but also in how movies could actually be filmed, through Rashomon Akira Kurosawa would forever change the way in which movies would be made. Working from two short stories from Ryunosuke Akutagawa, using stark settings and featuring unforgettable performances from Mifune and Shimura, perhaps the film's greatest achievement is the way it imbues humanity into a lurid story.
**** out of ****