Rashomon in Public Domain


Some people said the best film in public domain available at Internet Archive is Fritz Lang’s M (M – Eine Stadt sucht einen Mörder). I don’t know, I love the Einsenstein’s masterpiece Battleship Potemkin (Bronenosets Potyomkin). And now there is one more film in this competition: Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon.BTW, all those films were uploaded by K-otic.

Rashomon is a classic starred by Toshiro Mifune. The film has an unusual narrative structure that reflects the impossibility of obtaining the truth about an event when there are conflicting witness accounts.

The film depicts a rape and murder through the widely differing accounts of four witnesses, including the perpetrator and, through a medium, the murder victim. The story unfolds in flashback as the four characters—the bandit Taj?maru (Toshiro Mifune), the murdered samurai Kanazawa-no-Takehiro (Masayuki Mori), his wife Masago (Machiko Ky?), and the nameless Woodcutter (Takashi Shimura)—recount the events of one afternoon in a grove. But it is also a flashback within a flashback, because the accounts of the witnesses are being retold by a woodcutter and a priest to a ribald commoner.

I thought that I saw it a long time ago, but, just in case, I watched it again last week. It’s definitely great. Go download it or watch it at Google Video.

Related post: Akira Kurosawa movie posters.

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