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Directed by Akira Kurosawa

Japan 1985 162 mins.

One of the late masterpieces of Japanese master Kurosawa’s long and distinguished career, Ran was inspired by Shakespeare’s King Lear and the legend of daimyo (lord) Mori Motonari. Tatsuya Nakadai plays Hidetora Ichimonji, an aging warrior-lord who decides to abdicate in favor of his three sons, Taro, Jiro, and Saburo. His youngest son Saburo declares that Hidetora is foolish to believe that the three brothers will remain loyal to Hidetora’s wishes once they are in power and finds himself banished for his candor. His words, however, soon prove only too true, as Taro and Jiro conspire to strip their father of his title, his riches, and his army. Featuring Academy Award-winning costumes by Emi Wada and an evocative score by Toru Takemitsu, Kurosawa’s epic tale of greed and revenge remains one of the most highly regarded films in cinema. “Truly soul-shattering when experienced on the big screen.”—Mike D’Angelo, The A.V. Club. (Japanese with English subtitles)

The A.V. Club‘s Mike D’Angelo on the re-release of Ran.

The Village Voice‘s Simon Abrams on Ran in the context of the 2016 election season.