Ran ★★★★½

A monumental encore worthy of Kurosawa’s stature. Ran has been on my radar for a solid 4-5 years, and as time passed, my expectations grew. In hindsight, I’m so glad I built up to it, going through Throne of Blood, Kagemusha and 20 other of his films before plunging on his late opus.

I’m only beginning to process it as a whole, but there are some sequences that will forever be ingrained in my mind—Lord Hidetora’s marching through his burning castle, the majestic sea of battle horses or that haunting closing shot… Everything in this epic feels like the culmination of every attribute and sensibility in Kurosawa’s career—the theatricality, the humanism, and most notably, the visual grandeur.

I do like how Ran sways towards cynicism more heavily than your usual Kurosawa. Guess age makes sour old men out of all of us after all.

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