Monday, April 30, 2007


Toshiro Mifune was one badass motherf***er. Sure, there are other tough guys in film - but Mifune-san did it with more complexity than most. He played sensitive, troubled characters and he had a range like that of a great vocalist. His longstanding collaboration with Director Akira Kurosawa makes for an extremely varied and impressive body of work, and that would be the case even if he never made a film with another director (and he made plenty with other directors). A few of my fave roles with Kurosawa are Stray Dog (a post-war rookie cop whose pistol has been stolen and is being used to commit crimes), Yojimbo (a masterless samurai with a conscience), High and Low (a wealthy industrialist despised by a working class madman), and Red Beard (a doctor selflessly treating the poor). He, along with Kurosawa and team, beautifully expressed universal themes of human experience often missing from many of today's performances.


ras said...

the mad man mifune was great in sanjuro too. the samurai genre, and especially Kurosawa films, are so perfectly executed. every scene is balanced and contains symbolic meaning that could entertain one for days and days of research. glad to see the mifune photo.

Gazelle said...

You're right - a notable example is the camera work and framing in Rashomon. It blows me away every time I see it.