October 23, 2009

Uh, Oh: 'Throne of Blood' Is Up Next

There are two parts to watching Akira Kurosawa's 1957 masterpiece Throne of Blood. Part one, the easy part, is merely playing the DVD. Part two, the hard part, is convincing Trudi to watch it with me.

Ah...there's the rub.

I know, I know--wrong play. TOB, of course, is based on Macbeth, and it's probably the definitive screen adaptation, despite the fact that it's not a literal translation. Still, it's a movie with quite a bit of violence (especially toward the end), and because Trudi is not enamored of films with battle scenes, this will be a hard sell. I'll probably have to tell her it's not your ordinary chambara film, and there's little in the way of war action (unlike Kurosawa's King Lear adaptation, Ran). In truth, TOB is wonderfully eerie, pessimistic and evocative film, complete with weird mist and freaky ghosts, along with some extraordinary set pieces...such as the famously gruesome ending. And Trudi has good taste in movies, which tells me that she would like this one.

I'll just tone down the nasty bits when I pitch it to her. Here's hoping!

1 comment:

  1. Oh, ouch. TOB is a tough sell. If you're going to throw Kurosawa at her why not go mainstream and work your way into his interpretive stuff? Besides as much as I love TOB, and all the cast members, I found the acting to be a bit hokey.

    If she's not much of an action person why not take her down the more dramatic side of Kurosawa? High and Low is a great one (procedural cop-drama told from two perspectives - though a bit long). Ikiru is a personal favorite, and tearjerker. Drunken Angel is a solid tragedy/character, and has a great Takashi Shimura performance. The Bad Sleep Well is a tragic look at the cost of vengeance. Red Beard is a dramatic look at poverty in japan through the eyes of community hospital doctors.

    Unfortunatley nothing Kurosawa does is really mainstream, they almost always come with heavy handed morality. I'd say Stray Dog is about as close as he ever came to mainstream stuff. Either way, best of luck man!