Akira Kurosawa, the legendary film director who was responsible for such classic films as Rashomon (1950) and Seven Samurai (1954), is widely considered to be one of the most influential film directors of all time. Many of his films routinely show up on Best Films of All-Time lists. It will undoubtedly be great news to many people, then, that 25 of his films will be released in a deluxe box set this December. Criterion Collection will be releasing AK 100: 25 Films by Akira Kurosawa on December 8. According to this article, the set will include an illustrated book with an introduction by Stephen Prince (The Warrior’s Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa) and notes on each film and a remembrance by Donald Richie (Films of Akira Kurosawa). Sounds pretty elaborate.
The films included in this collection are:
The Bad Sleep Well (1960)
Drunken Angel (1948)
The Hidden Fortress (1958)
High and Low (1963)
I Live in Fear (1955)
The Idiot (1951)
The Lower Depths (1957)
The Men Who Tread on the Tiger’s Tail (1945)*
The Most Beautiful (1944)*
No Regrets for Our Youth (1946)
One Wonderful Sunday (1947)
Red Beard (1965)
Sanshiro Sugata (1943)*
Sanshiro Sugata, Part II (1944)*
Seven Samurai (1954)
Stray Dog (1949)
Throne of Blood (1957)
Any person who calls him or herself a film fan or an Akira Kurosawa fan should probably think about picking up this set. It’s a bit pricey, listed on Amazon at $300, but it’s well worth it if you are interested in the films enough.
Kurosawa has been named as a major influence on many of the most prominent film directors of all-time, so to say he is ‘legendary’ would probably be an understatement. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy Awards in 1989 “for cinematic accomplishments that have inspired, delighted, enriched and entertained worldwide audiences and influenced filmmakers throughout the world”.
Based on all that, it makes sense for there to be a definitive DVD collection celebrating his legacy and accomplishments as a visionary and gifted filmmaker.