‘Ikiru’ Criterion Synopsis
One of the greatest achievements by Akira Kurosawa, Ikiru shows the director at his most compassionate—affirming life through an exploration of death. Takashi Shimura beautifully portrays Kanji Watanabe, an aging bureaucrat with stomach cancer who is impelled to find meaning in his final days. Presented in a radically conceived twopart structure and shot with a perceptive, humanistic clarity of vision, Ikiru is a multifaceted look at what it means to be alive.
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- New, restored 4K digital transfer, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
- Audio commentary from 2003 by Stephen Prince, author of The Warrior’s Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa
- A Message from Akira Kurosawa: For Beautiful Movies (2000), a ninety-minute documentary produced by Kurosawa Productions and featuring interviews with the director
- Documentary on Ikiru from 2003, created as part of the Toho Masterworks series Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create,and featuring interviews with Kurosawa, script supervisor Teruyo Nogami, writer Hideo Oguni, actor Takashi Shimura, and others
- New English subtitle translation
- PLUS: An essay by critic and travel writer Pico Iyer and a reprint from critic Donald Richie’s 1965 book The Films of Akira Kurosawa
New cover by Eric Skillman