Produced by BBC TV's Arena, this critical biography of the Japanese master film-maker, who died in 1998, reuses 10-year-old British interview footage from a previous Arena programme, extensive archive footage, interviews with Kurosawa's old colleagues, critics (Tadao Sato and Donald Richie) and celebrity American admirers (Clint Eastwood, James Coburn), and filmed visits to his places of work. Writer/director Low makes much of Kurosawa's background - the family was samurai class, his mother from Osaka merchants; his brother, a silent film narrator, committed suicide at 27 - and his experience of the catastrophic 1923 Tokyo earthquake. He made some 38 films, his status ever on the rise, until the box-office disaster of Dodes'ka-den in 1970, when he himself made a suicide attempt. A thorough introduction to a great humanist.
Cast and crew