Ikiru

In IKIRU, Akira Kurosawa has created a subtle and moving account of a man who searches for meaning in the final days of his shallow existence. Kanji Watanabe (Takashi Shimura) is a clerk in a government office who discovers that he has cancer and, at most, only a year to live. Up to this point he has lived a highly structured life, rarely varying from routines....read more

Reviewed by Michael Scheinfeld
Rating:

In IKIRU, Akira Kurosawa has created a subtle and moving account of a man who searches for meaning in the final days of his shallow existence. Kanji Watanabe (Takashi Shimura) is a clerk in a government office who discovers that he has cancer and, at most, only a year to live. Up to this

point he has lived a highly structured life, rarely varying from routines. He has two children who offer him no comfort, and he decides he must find something to make him feel that his life has not been a total waste. The movement of IKIRU is extremely low key, and the overall emotional impact is

quite powerful, with the character of Kanji serving as a metaphor for postwar Japan. A beautiful and unusually quiet film from one of the world's greatest living directors.

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