Rashomon

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Japan | 1950 | 88 minutes | Akira Kurosawa

Opens September 6, 2019

After the body of a samurai is found by a woodcutter, the truth of what happened to him and his wife becomes more and less clear depending on who's telling the story.

Both screenings on September 6 will be introduced by John Trafton, who will be leading a five-week course on Kurosawa beginning September 12.

While on a journey through a wooded landscape, a samurai (Mayasuki Mori) and his wife (Machiko Kyô) are set upon by a bandit (Kurosawa regular Toshirô Mifune) who assaults the woman and kills her husband. But is that narrative as clear cut as it appears? The crux of Kurosawa's tale, adapted from a short story by Ryûnosuke Akutagawa, is how the differing retellings of the story chip away at the possibility of an objective understanding of what has transpired. Over the course of the film, we're given access to the conflicting perspectives of the bandit, the wife, the spirit of the deceased samurai, and the woodcutter who discovered the body of the samurai, and the truth blurs as their stories begin to stack up.

Winner of the Golden Lion at the 1951 Venice Film Festival, Rashomon is the moment where audiences around the world turned their attention to Kurosawa's immense mastery of the film medium.

  • Director: Akira Kurosawa
  • Principal Cast: Toshirô Mifune, Machiko Kyô, Masayuki Mori, Takashi Shimura, Minoru Chiaki, Kichijirô Ueda
  • Country: Japan
  • Year: 1950
  • Running Time: 88 minutes
  • Producer: Minoru Jingo
  • Screenplay: Akira Kurosawa, Shinobu Hashimoto
  • Cinematographers: Kazuo Miyagawa
  • Language: Japanese
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP