COMMENT MOVIE POSTERS THAT CONTAIN AN ACTUAL STILL FROM THE MOVIE (speaking of, some people recommend movies i have not…
High and Low
Intense and Highly Entertaining
An executive of a shoe company becomes a victim of extortion when his chauffeur's son is kidnapped and held for ransom.
Leave it to Kurosawa to make an hour of listing evidence and clues exciting.
High and Low is tight, tense, and engaging, but what makes it so great for me is that Kurosawa (based on the book King's Ransom by Ed McBain) uses an almost Dante-like structuring of the three points of view by which this story is told. Each act is a discrete and self-contained plot with its own beginning, middle, and end, which make High and Low more of a crime anthology than an epic. Still, all the main characters appear (physically or vocally) in all three stories, tying them together and leaving room for an epilogue which unites the circuitous narrative. In addition, the class-warfare analogies really…
Complicated history with this one, as the first time I saw it (at a tender age, shortly after starting NYU film school) I jumped to a completely false conclusion about what was going on, then proceeded to construct the foundation for my magnum opus The Ruse using the alternate version I'd imagined. Made it hard for me to see the film for what it is, obviously, and on top of that I think I was simply too green back then not to be thrown by the formal gambit of the slow descent—pretty sure I got all huffy about Mifune's apparent protagonist having been abandoned for what idiotically struck me as rote detective work. What can I say, I was…
I'm too sleepy to go into all the myriad reasons this is one of the greatest movies of all time. Kurosawa's filmmaking is so transcendent it seems weak to say it's "ahead of its time," and yet that's exactly what it is in scenes like the final one, with both characters being alternately seen through their reflections, sharing the same space, never really separate. The claustrophobic and almost unbearably tense first act, the incredibly immediate train sequence, the detailed and gripping investigation, the slow descent into the expressionistic and heartbreaking "hell" of the city's poor neighborhoods, the pink smoke...! I know he made more masterpieces than practically anybody else but why this isn't widely considered Kurosawa's best I haven't a clue.
Story : 8.8/10
Production : 8.3/10
Overall : 8.03/10
I find it extremely interesting that a film called High and Low (and one that so beautifully captures the symbolism behind those two words) would be filmed in such a unique aspect ratio. The choice to use 2.35 : 1 shows off a lot of things easily but none of them are high or low. Also, I haven't familiarized myself with this "Tohoscope" process yet but it certainly added an interesting element to the entire film.
Another thing I found engrossing was the way Akira Kurosawa switched his protagonists throughout the film. In the opening act we're seeing the world through the eyes of King Gondo, played wonderfully by…
Mind completely blown.
Never has a film further exceeded my expectations.
I fucking love this.
I bought this movie not even really knowing what it was about. All I knew for sure was that it was directed by Akira Kurosawa and it starred Toshirô Mifune and Tatsuya Nakadai. That is all I needed to know to want to own this movie even though it was apparent it had nothing to do with samurai.
The film itself amazed me. The way each scene is structured, framed and acted out I found incredible. There is no actor wasted at any given moment in this film. You can tell what each one is thinking, feeling or even what their social class is with no words spoken. It's not always by facial expression either, just by the way their sitting, standing or who they won't look directly at.
Simply put it's one of those great films everyone needs to see at least once. A film you just sit there and appreciate how each moment was put together.
Flawless police procedural structured in three parts - the crime, the investigation and the incarceration. Beautifully filmed with a script to die for. My favourite Kurosawa
Remarkable visual geometry in almost every set-up and a powerfully struck final chord elevate this film to a masterpiece level. "High and Low" has three layers and each one works so well - it's one of the best constructed police procedurals you'll ever see, an acutely observed social commentary and a profound morality play.
Just watch the way Kurosawa orchestrates groups of people in each shot - it's like a ballet minus the artifice. The way each event and each revelation ripple through the frame. No scene is thrown away, no gesture or verbal exchange wasted. The titular "High and Low" threads in the story are carried through beautifully by Mifune and his anti-hero counterpart. Their confrontation builds inexorably to a point of crushing desolation and desperation that will linger long after the screen goes black.
Wonderful and compelling cinema. Great police procedural by Kurosawa, with his three greatest acting assets all at one time: Toshirô Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai and Takashi Shimura. Marvelously clever little jabs at the upper echelon of Japanese society, thrown in for good measure.
Pure genius. A one act play that explodes open into an unforgettable train sequence and a stellar procedural. One of the all-time greats.
Ο Σ. Τζουμέρκας είχε πει πως αγαπάει αυτή την ταινία γιατί ενώ το πρώτο μέρος εξελίσσεται σε ένα δωμάτιο, στο δεύτερο παρελαύνει μια ολόκληρη χώρα.
Και η μετάβαση γίνεται με τρένο (😍), θα συμπληρώσω εγώ.
Στο δρόμο της επιστροφής μυρίζει παντού βροχή και vicks (χωρίς πλάκα).
Χαίρομαι που είναι αυτή η πρώτη ταινία του χειμώνα.
This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
The film is 2h 30m long but the rythm and the plot is so well developed that you can't get bored or tired. Akira Kurosawa is a film master, everyone knows that, but how well he defend himself in such a variety of genres still amazed me.
The film is a thriller abogonistut a kidnapping of the son of a wealthy man which goes south because the criminal mistakenly takes the son of the choufer. And it's not a Mc.Guffin, the details of the investigation and the suspense of every decision that has to be taken is detailed and well directed. But the film is much more. It talks about social class, about "high and low", and it pictured a…
Of the films that have gone down in history as inhabiting the absolute top tier of Akira Kurosawa's output, the ones regularly viewed by western audiences, High and Low is, along with the earlier Ikiru, one of the two set in then-contemporary Japan, rather than in its feudal past (so for once, you can see Toshiro Mifune and Takeshi Shimura wearing suits and ties rather than suits of armour). It shares other commonalities with Ikiru, most notably a bifurcated act structure focusing on different characters.
The two halves of the movie are, firstly, a kidnapping drama that takes place almost entirely inside one room, such to the extent that one might mistake it for an adaptation of a play, akin…
High and Low was my first experience with Kurosawa, and strangely enough, I chose to start with his most American film. Unlike his other films, which place its story and characters within a Japanese historical context, High and Low takes place in modern post-WWII Japan, where there are still hints of American influence – one of the first images we see in the film is two children dressed up as a cowboy and outlaw. Even the source material, Ed McBain’s The King’s Ransom, is popular American crime fiction. While it is clear to see some western influences on this film, it appears that Kurosawa has had much more influence on western cinema than vice-versa.
For everyone who exalts himself will…
I want you all to vote on what you think are the greatest films of all time!
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