Monday, July 21, 2014

I Live in Fear (生きものの記録) at Melwood Screening Room, August 5.

The 1955 Akira Kurosawa film I Live in Fear (生きものの記録) will play at the Melwood Screening Room (map) in Oakland on August 5. An overview from a 2002 A.V. Club review:
One of Kurosawa's oddest works, it arrived on the heels of The Seven Samurai, one of his most immediately accessible. Mifune, almost unrecognizable under layers of make-up, stars as a graying patriarch whose fear of nuclear annihilation leads him to make plans to move his large family to a farm in Brazil. Thinking his fears irrational, and expressing grave concern over the dispensation of his estate, they take him to court and, like a good judge, Kurosawa lets both sides exhaust themselves without drawing a premature judgement. Perhaps a bit too loose and leisurely to be entirely effective, Fear still offers a hugely compelling glimpse at the post-war Japanese mindset, and at the Cold War mindset in general. It's also a fine showcase for Kurosawa's nearly unparalleled visual style, and, like its companions in this set, a must-see for the director's admirers even if it's not quite among the very best entries in his formidable filmography.
The film is co-sponsored by Remembering Hiroshima, Imagining Peace as a commemoration of the 69th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the 6:00 pm screening is followed by an 8:00 pm Skype interview with Japanese students. The movie is in Japanese with English subtitles.