Been watching a few of my favorite samurai movies Akira Kurosawa’s Yojimbo (1961) and Sanjuro (1962). The Criterion Collection Blu-Ray sets picture quality is astounding, for two black and white films shot almost 50 years ago in Japan you expect their age to show in the HD transfer, but just the opposite.
Akira Kurosawa was an amazing film maker, always the most amazing composition and attention to detail. The picture quality has never been better with these films, the images are super sharp and the depth of the blacks are amazing. The use of almost all long lenses in this film give a sharp focus with little dept of field, still the picture never looks out of focus, a true show case of what a master focus puller can do. Kurosawa always brought out the best in his crew from production design to camera work, all well show cased on these Blu-Rays.
The striking physical performance from star Toshiro Mifune as the ronin samurai Sanjuro is my real reason I love these films and keep coming back to them. Everything from the speed and skill he uses his sword, to the great attitude he embodies as an anti hero of comic book proportions, being able to strike down ten opponents in ten seconds with out taking a hit and making it believable in context of the film.
Yojimbo made Mifune a international star in the 60’s and 70’s going on to do 170 films in his career. He is great as this character making Yojimbo and Sanjuro timeless classics and must see for all film fans and what better time to see them than now when you can see them in the best presentation possible in your own living room with The Criterion Collection Blu-Ray discs.
Till Next Time.