jaancarlo’s review published on Letterboxd:
Without a doubt, this is the easiest three and a half hour movie to watch, ever.
You don’t realize just how engrossed you are until the intermission comes on. Kurosawa traps you using his own editing combined with the INSANE amount of brilliantly-composited shots that he has per scene, all while making us fall in love with the perfect blend of character archetypes that would go on to influence film personalities that we still see to this day.
THIS is the movie that made me fall deeply for Takashi Shimura, after seeing him be used as a perfect accessory to other Kurosawa narratives, it was too satisfying to see him own his titular role the way he did in this film. I caught myself smiling whenever we’d see his contagious grin. I’m too excited to dive in further into his career.
(I won’t speak on Toshirō Mifune or else this review will just turn into me looking like a rambling fangirl. But good God, that scene with the baby fucking decimated me.)
The soundtrack!!!!!!!! Jesus!!! Such a key component to keeping our eyes peeled during even the most mundane conversations, pulling us closer to the narrative either through monolithic chanting or a diegetic beating drum.
I had the opportunity to watch this on the big screen back in film school, and I regret not giving it the full attention that it rightly deserves back then. (Granted, I was pretty goddamn high all the time.)
There’s no way on commenting on the influence this movie’s had without regurgitating what countless of film critics have stated before. Through my Kurosawa film binge, it’s become harder and harder to find the words to uniquely describe each of his movies as grandiosely as they deserve. With Seven Samurai, I’m only left chewing on the extent of what Kurosawa was able to accomplish in his days, and how his unique mindset truly transformed the world of cinema as we know it today.
To finalize, I must say... Toshirō Mifune has some ASS on him.