Ran

Ran

Synopsis

"Following his reappearance on the world stage, Kurosawa returned to the world of jidaigeki epic with two international co-productions, Kagemusha (1980), which George Lucas and Francis Ford Coppola persuaded 20th Century Fox to part-finance, and this lavish French-Japanese co-production, which saw him returning to Shakespeare with an adaptation of King Lear.

Possessing a similar synthesis of psychological tension and austere formal elegance to its more claustrophobic companion piece, Throne of Blood, it is even bigger and bolder in ambition. With its accumulated wide-shots of threatening ranks of horsemen clutching banners assembled on distant hilltops and a standout scene in which overthrown warlord Hidetora wanders in a confused daze from the apocalyptic conflagration of his besieged castle, every image is so meticulously composed, every scene so perfectly constructed, as to provide the kind of satori moments of transcendent stupefaction all but lost in the CG age." – Jasper Sharp