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Cinema Illuminations explores style of director Akira Kurosawa


   

Toshiro Mifune Toshiro Mifune appears in a "Seven Samurai" scene.


BLACKSBURG, Va., Sept. 28, 2012 – The School of Performing Arts and Cinema presents "Cinema Illuminations: The Films of Akira Kurosawa" on Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 7:30 p.m. in Theatre 101 on the campus of Virginia Tech. Admission is free.

The presentation by Department of Theatre and Cinema faculty member Stephen Prince incorporates numerous film clips to illustrate the essential features of Kurosawa's film style, from camerawork to sound and editing, and shows how Kurosawa's work shifted across the decades of his career. Prince also highlights the key films and filmmakers that have been influenced by Kurosawa's work.

The great Japanese director Akira Kurosawa has been acclaimed as a giant figure in world cinema.  During a 60-year career, he directed numerous enduring film classics. These include the epic "Seven Samurai" (1954), which has been called the finest Japanese film of all time; contemporary dramas such as "Ikiru" (1952) about a dying clerk’s search for meaning in life; "Throne of  Blood" (1957) and "Ran" (1985), Shakespearean adaptations set in 16th century Japan; and "Rashomon" (1950), about a crime whose facts cannot be known because witnesses cannot agree on what happened. Kurosawa’s films have influenced directors all over the world, and "Seven Samurai" has been remade more often than perhaps any other film in history.

Prince is the author of "The Warrior’s Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa" and has provided numerous audio commentaries on DVDs of Kurosawa’s films.

Virginia Tech's School of Performing Arts, a unit within the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, is comprised of the Department of Music, the Department of Theatre and Cinema, and programs and classes in dance. The school is committed to education, training, and experience in the transformative power of the performing arts. In addition to producing more than 400 student, faculty, and guest-artist events each year, the school presents the annual Summer Arts Festival and maintains the university's artist registry.