Be Quick or Be Dead: The Rebirth of the ‘Spaghetti Western’ in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained

The unusual twosome of Dr. King Schultz (Christoph Waltz, left) and Django Freeman (Jamie Foxx, right) go about their bounty-hunting business.

The release of a Quentin Tarantino movie is always an event, and it has been ever since the director took Hollywood by storm with his debut Reservoir Dogs and his sophomore effort Pulp Fiction about two decades ago. It’s not too hard to see why. People simply dig the coolness and the mystique surrounding his modern readings of different film genres. In addition, he usually recruits ensemble casts that can compete with the best of them. Roughly three years after the great success of Inglourious Basterds, the man has returned – with a star-studded line-up for Django Unchained, his first ever take on America’s favorite tale of old, the Western.

Read More
Sanada (Takashi Shimura, left) treats Matsanuga (Toshirô Mifune, right).

Ray of Hope: The Bleak Postwar Universe of Akira Kurosawa’s Drunken Angel

Sanada (Takashi Shimura, left) treats Matsanuga (Toshirô Mifune, right).

Japanese master Akira Kurosawa is arguably one of the greatest filmmakers of all time. Yet he seems to have been largely forgotten by modern cinemagoers – despite the fact that he produced a string of great movies that have influenced so many Hollywood and foreign classics. We’ve all heard of John Sturges’s The Magnificent Seven, Sergio Leone’s A Fistful Of Dollars, and, of course, George Lucas’s epic Star Wars, right? Not many people know that none of them would have been possible without Kurosawa.

Read More