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Mel's Desert Island Classics

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Movies I want on the island with me-Nov 19th 2008

Everyone should watch Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samuraiat some point. Set in feudal Japan, the film follows a group of farmers struggling to protect their village from bands of brigands. With their crops and families at risk, they set out to the city to hire samurai to protect them, but they don't have any money to pay the warriors. The gathering of the samurai is my favorite part of the film. Kurosawa's usual leading man Toshiro Mifune is terrific as the trickster tag-a-long who wants to become a samurai. Others may enjoy the big battle scene in the rain (everyone getting soaked being a common scenario in Kurosawa's films--beautifully shot). All the emotions are covered. Seven Samurai is said to have inspired Star Wars and The Magnificent Seven. See the Britannica Encyclopedia in CPL's E-library for biographies and history.

If you want to learn about Kurosawa in more detail, check out these books: Waiting on the Weather, The Emperor and the Wolf, The Films of Akira Kurosawa, Perspectives on Akira Kurosawa. Other Kurosawa films in the library's collection include Rashomon, a tale told from multiple points of view, The Hidden Fortressand High and Low.

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