Monthly Inspiration: Akira Kurosawa

30May12

Monthly Inspiration is a new blog series that’s about what inspires me; filmmakers, styles, actors, scripts… each month, I’ll cover one new piece of inspiration. Hopefully I can turn you on to something that will inspire you as well.

For this month’s inspiration I thought I would start with one of my all time favorite directors: Akira Kurosawa (imdb.com). Over his 60+ years in the industry he wrote more than 70 films and directed more than 30. His style of storytelling and direction are legendary.

Here’s a short list of my favorites:
1. Seven Samurai
2. Yojimbo
3. Rashomon
4. Ikuru
5. Ran
6. Kagemusha
7. The Idiot
8. Red Beard
9. The Hidden Fortress
10. Sanjuro

Kurosawa’s films depict compelling stories that are driven by highly watchable characters. There isn’t a lot of flash and glimmer, but every time I watch a film, like Seven Samurai or Yojimbo, I sit on the edge of my seat in anticipation. Many people find his films to be long-winded; but these films are epics and should be viewed as such.

I admire the work that Kurosawa has done, and I look to his films for inspiration; but, he has inspired some other amazing works (consequently, I find a number of these to also be inspirational).

Here’s some comparison examples:

The Magnificent Seven (1960)(imdb.com) = Seven Samurai (1954)(imdb.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Fistful of Dollars (1964)(imdb.com) = Yojimbo (1961)(imdb.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Outrage (1964)(imdb.com) = Rashomon (1950)(imdb.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

His filmmaking style is one-of-a-kind, though many try to mimic it. He has a unique way of enveloping the audience in the world of the film. The largest part of why I find Kurosawa so influential is because of his stories. He’s able to completely invigorate me without having the same special effects of today’s films. As most filmmakers know, story is key; and Kurosawa’s films are the perfect example of this.

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One Response to “Monthly Inspiration: Akira Kurosawa”


  1. 1 Monthly Inspiration: Guillermo del Toro « Widen Media Blog

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