Saturday through Tuesday

The Seven Samurai (1954)

In 16th century Japan, farmers under the heel of marauding bandits decide to hire ronin for protection. The odds: seven samurai versus forty bandits. Their pay: a few handfuls of rice.

Voted in the 1979 Kinema Jumpo critics’ poll as the Best Japanese Film of all time.

“No one has come near it.” Pauline Kael.

With Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Kuninori Kodo.

Directed and produced by Akira Kurosawa. Written by Akira Kurosawa, Shinobu Hashimoto, Hideo Oguni. Photographed by Asaichi Nakai. Music by Fumio Hayasaka. Toho. 207 minutes.

Saturday through Tuesday (August 1-4) at 7:30, plus 3:00 Sat/Sun.


Wednesday through Friday

Ikiru (1952)

Literally: To Live

A small bureaucrat learns he has terminal cancer. What to do with only six months left? Family ties, booze, partying, mentoring: he gives them all a try, until he figures out what he really can do. But as tipsy co-workers reminisce during his second-act wake, the question remains: did his ultimate achievement make a difference?

Role of a lifetime for Kurosawa regular Takashi Shimura—who next played the leader of the Seven Samurai.

“One of the greatest films of postwar Japan.” Tadao Sato.

With Takashi Shimura, Nobuo Kaneko, Kyoto Seki.

Directed by Akira Kurosawa. Written by Hideo Oguni, Shinobu Hashimoto, Akira Kurosawa. Photographed by Asaishi Nakai. Music by Fumio Hayasaka. 143 minutes.

Wednesday through Friday (August 5-7) at 7:30.