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Rashomon
This riveting psychological thriller that investigates the nature of truth and the meaning of justice is widely considered one of the greatest films ever made. Four people give different accounts of a man's murder and the rape of his wife,…
Seven Samurai
One of the most thrilling movie epics of all time, SEVEN SAMURAI (Shichinin no samurai) tells the story of a sixteenth-century village whose desperate inhabitants hire the eponymous warriors to protect them from invading bandits. This three-hour ride from Akira…
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Ikiru
Considered by some to be Akira Kurosawa's greatest achievement, IKIRU presents the director at his most compassionate--affirming life through an exploration of a man's death. Takashi Shimura portrays Kanji Watanabe, an aging bureaucrat with stomach cancer forced to strip the…
Ugetsu
"Quite simply one of the greatest of filmmakers," said Jean-Luc Godard of Kenji Mizoguchi. And UGETSU, a ghost story like no other, is surely the Japanese director's supreme achievement. Derived from stories by Akinari Ueda and Guy de Maupassant, this…
A Letter to Momo - Momo e no tegami
From the creators of Ghost in the Shell comes a wonderfully expressive and beautifully hand-drawn animated tale that combines bursts of whimsy and kinetic humor with deeply felt emotion and drama. The last time Momo saw her father they had…
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Yojimbo
The incomparable Toshiro Mifune stars in Akira Kurosawa's visually stunning and darkly comic YOJIMBO. To rid a terror-stricken village of corruption, wily masterless samurai Sanjuro turns a range war between two evil clans to his own advantage. Remade twice, by…
Patema Inverted - Sakasama no Patema
From visionary director Yasuhiro Yoshiura ( Time of Eve ) comes PATEMA INVERTED, a perspective-twisting sci-fi adventure about two kids separated by opposite gravities. Patema lives in an underground world of tunnels, the long-abandoned ruins of a giant industrial complex.…
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The Hidden Fortress
A grand-scale adventure as only Akira Kurosawa could make one, THE HIDDEN FORTRESS stars the inimitable Toshiro Mifune as a general charged with guarding his defeated clan's princess (a fierce Misa Uehara) as the two smuggle royal treasure across hostile…
Quill: The Life of A Guide Dog
The documentary-like story of a yellow Labrador Retriever guide dog for the blind named Quill. We follow Quill from the litter, his selection to become a guide, his life with a foster family until his first birthday, followed by highly…
Throne of Blood
This vivid, visceral Macbeth adaptation, directed by Akira Kurosawa, sets Shakespeare's definitive tale of ambition and duplicity in a ghostly, fog-enshrouded landscape in feudal Japan. As a hardened warrior who rises savagely to power, Toshiro Mifune gives a remarkable, animalistic…
Welcome to the Space Show - Uchû shô e yôkoso
With an intergalactic cast of thousands, Koji Masunari's colorfully explosive debut feature sets a new high for visual spectacle and sheer inventiveness of character design - in what has to be one of the most gleefully surreal depictions of alien…
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Floating Weeds
In 1959, Yasujiro Ozu remade his 1934 silent classic A Story of Floating Weeds in color with the celebrated cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa (Rashomon, Ugetsu). Setting this later version in a seaside location, Ozu otherwise preserves the details of his elegantly…
Funeral Parade of Roses - Bara no sôretsu
Director Toshio Matsumoto's shattering, kaleidoscopic masterpiece is one of the most subversive and intoxicating films of the late 1960s: a headlong dive into a dazzling, unseen Tokyo night-world of drag queen bars and fabulous divas, fueled by booze, drugs, fuzz…
Happy Hour - Happî awâ
A powerful affirmation of the immersive potential of cinema. HAPPY HOUR is a slow-burning epic chronicling the emotional journey of four thirty-something women in the misty seaside city of Kobe. As they navigate the unsteady currents of their work, domestic,…
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Harakiri
Following the collapse of his clan, an unemployed samurai (Tatsuya Nakadai) arrives at the manor of Lord Iyi, begging to be allowed to commit ritual suicide on the property. Iyi's clansmen, believing the desperate ronin is merely angling for a…
Tokyo Drifter
In this jazzy gangster film, reformed killer Tetsu's attempt to go straight is thwarted when his former cohorts call him back to Tokyo to help battle a rival gang. Director Seijun Suzuki's onslaught of stylized violence and trippy colors is…
In the Realm of the Senses
Still censored in its own country, IN THE REALM OF THE SENSES (Ai no corrida), by Japanese director Nagisa Oshima, remains one of the most controversial films of all time. A graphic portrayal of insatiable sexual desire, Oshima's film, set…
Belladonna of Sadness - Kanashimi no Beradonna
After being banished from her village, a peasant woman makes a pact with the devil to gain magical ability. A classic-animated gem from Japan adapted from the novel, Belladonna by Jules Michelet, the story concerns a love affair taking place…
Late Spring
One of the most powerful of Yasujiro Ozu's family portraits, LATE SPRING (Banshun) tells the story of a widowed father who feels compelled to marry off his beloved only daughter. Eminent Ozu players Chishu Ryu and Setsuko Hara command this…
Wolf Guy - Urufu gai: Moero ôkami-otoko
One of the rarest and most sought-after cult films produced by Japan's Toei Studio, WOLF GUY is a bonkers mix of ultra-1970's style, horror, action and sci-fi. Shinichi "Sonny" Chiba ( Kill Bill, The Shogun's Samurai ) is a martial…