×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Ikiru

Director Akira Kurosawa, known for Rashomon and The Seven Samurai, here unspools a work of compassion.

With:
Takashi Shimura Nobuo Kaneko Kyoko Seki Miki Odagiri Makoto Kobori Yunosuke Ito

Director Akira Kurosawa, known for Rashomon and The Seven Samurai, here unspools a work of compassion.

An ordinary white collar worker (Takashi Shimura), an aging head of a public work’s bureau, finds he has cancer and a few months to live. He tells nobody but finds that he is really alone and estranged from his son and daughter-in-law. He suddenly sees that his life has been dull and useless, wasted in an office from which he has not been absent in 30 years.

He draws out his money and goes out into the Tokyo night. He meets a deadbeat poet in whom he confides. They go out on the town.

He goes home where his uncomprehending son (Nobuo Kaneko) reproaches him. Meeting one of his office girls (Miki Odagiri) he finds her new job, that of making toys for children, gives him a sudden goal. He pushes a needed children’s playground through all the bureaucratic red tape.

Half of the film is told in the third person and half is his sacrifice as seen through the eyes of guests at his funeral. Kurosawa performs a tour-de-force in keeping a dramatic thread throughout and avoiding the mawkish. It is technically excellent with a telling Occidental-type musical score.

Ikiru

Japan

Production: Toho. Director Akira Kurosawa; Producer Shojiro Motoki; Screenplay Shinobu Hashimoto, Hideo Oguni, Akira Kurosawa; Camera Asakazu Nakai; Editor Akira Kurosawa; Music Fumio Hayasaka; Art Director So Matsuyama

Crew: (B&W) Available on VHS, DVD. Extract of a review from 1952. Running time: 143 MIN.

With: Takashi Shimura Nobuo Kaneko Kyoko Seki Miki Odagiri Makoto Kobori Yunosuke Ito

More Film

  • Aladdin

    Box Office: 'Aladdin' Taking Flight With $105 Million in North America

    Disney’s live-action “Aladdin” is flying high with an estimated $105 million in North America during the four-day Memorial Day holiday weekend. It’s the sixth-highest Memorial Day weekend total ever, topping the 2011 mark of $103.4 million for “The Hangover Part II.” The top total came in 2007, when “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” [...]

  • Agustina San Martin Talks Cannes Special

    Agustina San Martin Talks Cannes Special Mention Winner ‘Monster God’

    CANNES – An exploration of the ramifications of God, “Monster God,” from Argentina’s Agustina San Martín, took a Special Mention – an effective runner’s up prize – on Saturday night at this year’s Cannes Film Festival short film competition. It’s not difficult to see why, especially when jury president Claire Denis own films’ power resists [...]

  • Atlantics

    Netflix Snags Worldwide Rights to Cannes Winners 'Atlantics,' 'I Lost My Body'

    Mati Diop’s feature directorial debut “Atlantics” and Jérémy Clapin’s animated favorite “I Lost My Body” have both been acquired by Netflix following wins at Cannes Film Festival. “Atlantics” was awarded the grand prix while “I Lost My Body” was voted the best film at the independent International Critics Week. The deals are for worldwide rights [...]

  • Stan Lee, left, and Keya Morgan

    Stan Lee's Former Business Manager Arrested on Elder Abuse Charges

    Stan Lee’s former business manager, Keya Morgan, was arrested in Arizona Saturday morning on an outstanding warrant from the Los Angeles Police Department. The LAPD’s Mike Lopez confirmed that the arrest warrant was for the following charges: one count of false imprisonment – elder adult; three counts of grand theft from elder or dependent adult, [...]

  • Moby attends the LA premiere of

    Moby Apologizes to Natalie Portman Over Book Controversy

    Moby has issued an apology of sorts after writing in his recently published memoir “Then It Fell Apart” that he dated Natalie Portman when she was 20 — a claim the actress refuted. “As some time has passed I’ve realized that many of the criticisms leveled at me regarding my inclusion of Natalie in Then [...]

  • Bong Joon-ho reacts after winning the

    Bong Joon-ho's 'Parasite' Wins the Palme d'Or at Cannes

    CANNES — The 72nd edition of the Cannes Film Festival wrapped with jury president Alejandro González Iñárritu announcing the group’s unanimous decision to award the Palme d’Or to South Korean director Bong Joon-ho for his sly, politically charged “Parasite.” Following last year’s win for humanistic Japanese drama “Shoplifters,” the well-reviewed Asian thriller represents the yin [...]

  • Invisible Life Brazilian Cinema

    Cannes Film Review: 'The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão'

    A “tropical melodrama” is how the marketing materials bill “The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão.” If that sounds about the most high-camp subgenre ever devised, Karim Aïnouz’s ravishing period saga lives up to the description — high emotion articulated with utmost sincerity and heady stylistic excess, all in the perspiring environs of midcentury Rio de [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content