Vibrant Supercut Shows How Akira Kurosawa Was a Master of Color

The master director (and former painter) blossomed when he gained access to color film.

by Beckett Mufson
Jun 15 2017, 6:16pm

Screencaps via Vimeo

Famously referenced by Quentin Tarantino and praised for their precise movement and adaptation of Western structure to Japanese stories, the films of Akira Kurasawa are universally lauded masterpieces. His black-and-white films of the 50s and 60s are often referenced in popular culture, but Philip Brubaker leads us on a deep dive into the former painter's vibrant opuses of the 70s and 80s in a new video essay called Kurosawa Color.

Brubaker dissects the meaning of Kurosawa's vibrant reds and yellows in the epic Ran; the unrealistic colors of dream sequences contrasted with poverty's monochrome in Dodes'ka-den; and use of actual paintings within the film Dreams. Watch the video below to learn how the master made some of his most colorful films (while losing his eyesight, no less!).

See more film essays by Philip Brubaker here.


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