New York, NY
TOSHIRŌ MIFUNE REDUX
Time & Location
July 8 – 21
Film Forum (New York, NY)
AboutA 2-week, 10-film series celebrating the legendary Japanese actor’s collaborations with director Akira Kurosawa including SEVEN SAMURAI, HIGH AND LOW, THRONE OF BLOOD, STRAY DOG, SANJURO, YOJIMBO, RED BEARD, HIDDEN FORTRESS, DRUNKEN ANGEL, all presented in 35mm with a new 4K restoration of RASHOMON.
The series is abridged from Film Forum’s recent MIFUNE program, a 4-week 33-film festival which took place from February 11 – March 10, 2022.
Visit the Film Forum website to buy tickets.
Public Screening Schedule:
DRUNKEN ANGEL Japan, 1948 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Reisaburo Yamamoto 35mm. Approx. 98 min.
Mifune’s greasily-coiffed “Jungle Boogie”-dancing gangster gets the bad news from alcoholic doctor Takashi Shimura —he’s got TB; and then the prewar boss returns. First collaboration of “the greatest actor-director team in film history” (David Shipman).
Friday, July 8 at 12:30 Sunday, July 10 at 8:50 Tuesday, July 12 at 3:00 Tuesday, July 19 at 12:30, 7:50 Wednesday, July 20 at 3:10 STRAY DOG Japan, 1949 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune and Takashi Shimura 35mm. Approx. 122 min.
While a rubble-strewn Tokyo swelters through a torrid heat wave, awkward young white-suited detective Mifune finds to his shame that his pistol has been stolen — and that it’s been used in a murder. Thus begins his obsessive, guilt-ridden search, highlighted by a nearly 10-minute sequence shot by hidden camera in the city’s toughest black market. Kurosawa adapted his own unpublished novel for this, the beginning of the genre in Japan.
Friday, July 8 at 2:40 Tuesday, July 12 at 12:30 Saturday, July 16 at 8:35 Wednesday, July 20 at 12:30, 7:40 RASHOMON Japan, 1950 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Cinematography by Kazuo Miyagawa Starring Toshirō Mifune, Takashi Shimura Based on Ryunosuke Akutagawa’s short story “In a Grove” 4K Restoration. Approx. 88 min.
Rape and murder in 12th-century Kyoto, as seen by four conflicting witnesses. Adapted from two stories by the great Ryunosuke Akutagawa, its worldwide acclaim (Venice Grand Prize, Best Foreign Film Oscar) vaulted an already-great-but internationally-unknown director and national cinema to world prominence. Machiko Kyō’s performance would land her a LIFE cover and, as the Bandit, Mifune goes beyond overacting into something so outrageous it could only be real.
Friday, July 8 at 5:20 Sunday, July 10 at 12:30 Monday, July 11 at 9:00 Friday, July 15 at 12:30, 6:00 Monday, July 18 at 4:50 Thursday, July 21 at 12:30 HIDDEN FORTRESS Japan, 1958 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Misa Uehara, Minoru Chiaki, Kamatari Fujiwara 35mm. Approx. 139 min.
Two constantly bickering and bumbling farmers on the run from clan wars are dragooned by superman general Mifune into aiding his rescue of fugitive princess Misa Uehara and her family’s hidden gold. Pure entertainment from the masters, acknowledged by George Lucas as the inspiration for Star Wars.
Saturday, July 9 at 3:30 Thursday, July 14 at 12:30, 7:40 Saturday, July 16 at 1:00 Tuesday, July 19 at 2:40 SEVEN SAMURAI Japan, 1954 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Daisuke Katō, Isao Kimura, Minoru Chiaki, Seiji Miyaguchi, Yoshio Inaba 35mm print courtesy of The Japan Foundation. Approx. 207 min.
In 16th-century Japan, farmers under the heel of marauding bandits decide to hire ronin for protection; the odds: 7 samurai vs. 40 bandits; their pay: a few grains of rice. With Takashi Shimura as the calm leader, and Mifune as #7, transitioning from manic goofball to tortured, self-hating tragic hero, amid some of the most hair-raising battles ever shot. “No one has come near it.” – Pauline Kael.
Friday, July 8 at 7:20 Saturday, July 9 at 6:30 Sunday, July 10 at 4:50 Thursday, July 14 at 3:30 Monday, July 18 at 12:30 Thursday, July 21 at 7:00 THRONE OF BLOOD Japan, 1957 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Isuzu Yamada 35mm. Approx. 110 min.
Macbeth transforms into a medieval Japanese legend, as General Mifune gallops through a seemingly endless forest to his encounter with a single witch, then, as dense fog lifts, finds himself before a looming castle. With the legendary Isuzu Yamada as his Lady, this is a partnership of titans.
Sunday, July 10, 2:30 Monday, July 11, 4:00 Saturday, July 16, 6:15 Tuesday, July 19, 5:30 Wednesday, July 20, 5:20 HIGH AND LOW Japan, 1963 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Kyōko Kagawa. 35mm. Approx. 143 min.
Shoe company exec Mifune is in the midst of a mortgageeverything takeover battle when the phone rings with a giant ransom demand for his son. Adapted from Ed McBain’s novel King’s Ransom, this is the ultimate kidnap movie, with the cops led by Steve McQueen-cool Tatsuya Nakadai; the money transfer aboard the Shinkansen (bullet train); and a jailhouse interview punctuated by the heaviest steel door closing in film history.
Saturday, July 9 at 12:30 Monday, July 11 at 12:30 Friday, July 15 2:30, 8:00 RED BEARD Japan, 1965 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Yūzō Kayama, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Reiko Dan 35mm. Approx. 185 min.
In a 19th-century slum clinic for the poor, a gruff heavily bearded Dr. Mifune (Best Actor, Venice) straightens out an arrogant young intern and through his hardboiled warmth and stern compassion creates, instead of the usual “circle of evil,” rather a circle of good. Mifune’s last film for Kurosawa.
Wednesday, July 13, 2:45 Sunday, July 17, 5:10 SANJURO Japan, 1962 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Starring Toshirō Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Yūzō Kayama, Reiko Dan 35mm. Approx. 96 min.
Painfully sincere young samurai plan how to save the day in their clan’s power struggle, but they have to be straightened out and bailed out by grubby ronin Mifune, repeating his Yojimbo role, his final showdown with Tatsuya Nakadai coming to a startling conclusion.
Wednesday, July 13, 12:30, 9:00 Sunday, July 17 at 3:00 Monday, June 18, 6:50 Thursday, July 21, 4:55 YOJIMBO Japan, 1961 Directed by Akira Kurosawa
Produced by Akira Kurosawa, Tomoyuki Tanaka and Ryūzō Kikushima Starring Toshirō Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai 35mm. Approx. 110 min.
Wandering into a deserted village, scruffy and hungry ronin Mifune sees his chance to rake in the ryo as a yojimbo (bodyguard). And after checking out the sake merchant’s thugs squaring off against the silk merchant’s goon squad, twice as much, if he hires out to both sides. But there’s a final showdown with Tatsuya Nakadai’s pistol-waving, Elvislike Samurai killer.
Tuesday, July 12, 5:30 Saturday, July 16, 3:50 Sunday, July 17, 12:30, 8:45 Monday, July 18 8:55 Thursday, July 21, 2:30