Akira Kurosawa

The Lower Depths

The Lower Depths

Jean Renoir and Akira Kurosawa, two of cinema's greatest directors, transform Maxim Gorky's classic proletariat play The Lower Depths in their own ways for their own times. Renoir, working amidst the rise of Hitler and the Popular Front in France, had need to take license with the dark nature of Gorky's source material, softening its bleak outlook. Kurosawa, firmly situated in the postwar world, found little reason for hope. He remained faithful to the original with its focus on the conflict between illusion and reality—a theme he would return to over and over again. Working with their most celebrated actors (Gabin with Renoir; Mifune with Kurosawa), each film offers a unique look at cinematic adaptation—where social conditions and filmmaking styles converge to create unique masterpieces.

Film Info

Available In

Collector's Set

AK 100: 25 Films by Akira Kurosawa

AK 100: 25 Films by Kurosawa

DVD Box Set

25 Discs

Ships Aug 6, 2018

$319.00

Out Of Print

Collector's Set

The Lower Depths

The Lower Depths

DVD Box Set

2 Discs

$31.96

The Lower Depths
Cast
Toshiro Mifune
Sutekichi (the thief)
Isuzu Yamada
Osugi (the landlady)
Kyoko Kagawa
Okayo (her sister)
Ganjiro Nakamura
Rokubei (her husband)
Koji Mitsui
Yoshisaburo (the gambler)
Kamatari Fujiwara
The actor
Akemi Negishi
Osen (the prostitute)
Minoru Chiaki
The ex-samurai
Nijiko Kiyokawa
Otaki
Eijiro Tono
Tomekichi (the tinker)
Eiko Miyoshi
Asa (his wife)
Kichijiro Ueda
Police agent
Haruo Tanaka
Tatsu
Bokuzen Hidari
Kahei (the pilgrim)
Credits
Director
Akira Kurosawa
Producers
Akira Kurosawa
Producers
Shojiro Motoki
Screenplay
Akira Kurosawa
(based on the Maxim Gorky play Na dne)
Hideo Oguni
Cinematography
Kazuo Yamasaki
Art direction
Yoshiro Muraki
Music
Masaru Sato
Sound
Fumio Yanoguchi
Sound effects
Ichiro Minawa
Lighting
Shigeru Mori

From The Current

From the Kurosawa Archives
From the Kurosawa Archives

With a monumental body of work spanning nearly six decades, thirty feature films, and a staggering array of styles and genres, Akira Kurosawa has been a cornerstone of our collection since we released Seven Samurai as our second Criterion edition in …

/
Akira Kurosawa’s The Lower Depths

Akira Kurosawa was a man of his time, who participated fully in the artistic and intellectual world of Japan from the 1930s until his death in 1998. Although filmgoers may think of him in terms of the screen images he created, Kurosawa maintained a d…

Explore

Akira Kurosawa

Writer, Producer, Director

Arguably the most celebrated Japanese filmmaker of all time, Akira Kurosawa had a career that spanned from the Second World War to the early nineties and that stands as a monument of artistic, entertainment, and personal achievement. His best-known films remain his samurai epics Seven Samurai and Yojimbo, but his intimate dramas, such as Ikiru and High and Low, are just as searing. The first serious phase of Kurosawa’s career came during the postwar era, with Drunken Angel and Stray Dog, gritty dramas about people on the margins of society that featured the first notable appearances by Toshiro Mifune, the director’s longtime leading man. Kurosawa would subsequently gain international fame with Rashomon, a breakthrough in nonlinear narrative and sumptuous visuals. Following a personal breakdown in the late sixties, Kurosawa rebounded by expanding his dark brand of humanism into new stylistic territory, with films such as Kagemusha and Ran, visionary, color, epic ruminations on modern man and nature.