A reimagining of Shakespeare’s King Lear as a historical epic set in sixteenth century Japan. When a Lord abdicates to his three sons, two turn against him. An examination of the folly of war and the crumbling of a family under the weight of betrayal, greed and power.
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The epic archetype that only a handful of auteurs could actually pull off. The scope here is remarkable. Kurosawa's customized adaptation of Shakespeare's 'King Lear' proves that he is also a master at utilizing a rich, colour-bound cinematographic canvas, as well as a seamless synthesizing of context, characterisation and narrative. A shattering cinematic artefact that few directors could match today.
A film divided in 2 halves, heaven and hell, each ending with some of the most hellish moments captured by film. If the waterfall scene in Seven Samurai was dreamlike, then the siege sequence in Ran is a nightmare given flesh. The shift that Hidetora goes through is the very same that Kurosawa seems to have gone through as the humanism of the 50s has morphed into this film's nihilism.
This is what I called a total madness. In here, Kurosawa blends father and son relationship, lust, greed, ambition, violence, revenge, nihilism, and the absence of gods into a brutally chaotic (and really fucking depressing) 160 minutes magnum opus. Definitely one of the best fucked-up movie I've ever seen, 9/10.
Basada en El Rey Lear de Shakespeare, se trata de la última obra maestra de Kurosawa y la más opresiva de toda su filmografía, con la cual consiguió un deslumbrante fresco histórico pleno de muerte y destrucción, al mismo tiempo que una reflexión sobre la crueldad y la ambición insaciable de poder. Notables interpretaciones de Tatsuya Nakadai, Mieko Harada, y una banda sonora excepcional a cargo de Toru Takemitsu.