THE LOWER DEPTHS
Saturday, November 2
Director Akira Kurosawa
Cast Toshirô Mifune, Bokuzen Hidari, Isuzu Yamada, Kyôko Kagawa
Screenplay Akira Kurosawa, Hideo Oguni | Cinematography Kazuo Yamazaki
1957 | Japan | 35mm | approx. 137 min. | In Japanese with English subtitles
Maxim Gorky’s ensemble play about down-and-outs transposed to 19th century Japan, this is probably the greatest theater-to-film adaptation ever made. The ensemble acting is superb – not too surprising, considering the forty-day rehearsal period for both cast and crew. And the interpretation is unusual and exciting, with comedian Bokuzen Hidari in the usually tear-jerking role of the pilgrim and Mifune as punkish thief. One of Kurosawa’s finest works – all too little known.