THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN

The Magnificent Seven doesn’t start with fanfare. No blaring horns to signal the American West, no soaring strings to complement the vast vistas before the camera, no cinematic shots of warring bandits cresting a hill, no legends and no heroes. Instead: ominous tones and close, shaky shots of a wagon delivering gold to a heavily watched bank. Cut to a church where a debate rages between the parishioners. Should they stay or should they go? Bartholomew Bogue (Peter Sarsgaard) is coming to pay pennies on the dollar for their land — which he will strip-mine and pull every last ounce … Continue reading THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN

THRONE OF BLOOD

The movie opens and closes with a similar image, the ruins of a fortress, built at the foot of Mt. Fuji, enveloped by fog. A visual cue from famed Japanese director, Akria Kurosawa reminding viewers that what goes around, comes around, and that the only thing that truly lasts, are the elements. Throne of Blood, playing at the Landmark Chez Artiste on Wednesday, April 29, is Kurosawa’s interpretation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Three times, Kurosawa looked to the Bard for inspiration — Hamlet became The Bad Sleep Well (1960) and King Lear lent itself to Ran (1985) — but it is … Continue reading THRONE OF BLOOD