Quick-Thoughts: Akira Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood (1957)

Akira Kurosawa Binge Part IV of IX

After watching such Kurosawa films as Rashomon or Seven Samurai, I was not expecting drama picture Throne of Blood to have such a spiritual and haunting production behind it. In spite of Akira Kurosawa being tossed around as that old director who made mainly “samurai” movies, I’ve got to give him credit for being able to prolifically make every samurai flick I’ve seen of his thus far vastly disparate from one another. There’s so much variety in the applicable substance found within the director’s filmography, therefore it feels gratuitous to simply coin him as “that dude who made samurai movies” when nearly every movie he’s made takes on a genre of its own—we have to remember that “samurai” is just a sub-genre in actuality, not a core one. 

There are some really cunning directing techniques I caught onto in Throne of Blood like in one particular scene where a murder takes place but you don’t actually witness the murder, you’re just shown another person’s revealing perspective as it happens. The movie, as a whole, is irresistibly addicting to look at when it comes to how it bestows the abnormal information being conveyed on screen.

My main qualm when it comes to Throne of Blood, although, is its overall arrangement of the narrative. The story is structured very hazily, and if you’re not paying close attention 24/7 to everything that’s going on during the movie, you’re guaranteed to miss something pivotal because events just naturally seem to jump ahead at such a rushed agenda. I think a protracted runtime would have benefited the picture from appearing so fluttery.

But still, this is another heavenly entertaining Akira Kurosawa film that’s highly worth checking out for movie geeks alike. It’s a solid take on one of Shakespeare’s greatest pieces, Macbeth

Verdict: B

Akira Kurosawa Ranked

“Throne of Blood” is now available to stream on Amazon Prime, iTunes, and The Criterion Channel.


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