In its July issue, Sight & Sound tosses its helmet into the Kurosawa ring with its own centenary tribute to the immortal Japanese filmmaker. In an eleven-page section called Kurosawa, the Last Emperor, the magazine’s editors collect articles and interviews, some new and some from their archives, celebrating the director’s epic career (and coinciding with the BFI’s Kurosawa retrospective, which is going on now). It all begins with a reprint of a 1981 interview conducted by Tony Rayns, marking the release of Kagemusha but also looking back on the four decades of Kurosawa’s filmmaking that preceded it. Then there’s “Kurosawa on Kurosawa” (the only article from the section available online), which contains excerpts from a 1964 Sight & Sound interview with Donald Richie, along with two brief passages from 1981 and 1986. Plus, Alexander Jacoby weighs in on Kurosawa’s postwar noirs Drunken Angel and Stray Dog, and Stuart Galbraith IV on his nearly tragic failed attempts to make it in Hollywood.
Other highlights of the issue include Jonathan Romney’s interview with Alain Resnais and take on Resnais’ latest, Wild Grass, and Tim Lucas’s review of Criterion’s DVD edition of The Fugitive Kind, in which he calls director Sidney Lumet “arguably the most passionate interpreter [Tennessee] Williams’s work ever had.”