Number of Times Seen – 1 (3 Nov 2020)
Brief Synopsis – Three men recount a crime and its aftermath where things change during each perspective of the events.
My Take on it – I am a big fan of Rashomon (1950) and was quite interested in seeing how they could translate it into an English language Western.
Unfortunately they lose some of the magic of the original film and isn’t nearly as gripping or enjoyable as it could be.
The film has a stellar cast which includes Paul Newman, Laurence Harvey, Edward G. Robinson and William Shatner, but something constantly feels off by the way this is all presented.
The film unfortunately also fails to find a way to feel unique from the original and instead seems like a carbon copy with just a change in language.
The choice to remake this as a western, like with many of Kurosawa’s stories ac tally works quite well despite the fact that it is just transplanting a story to another time and place.
The fact remains tho that as good as this version of the story is, it cant even come close to comparison with Akira Kurosawa’s version of things even if there have been numerous successes in the past of adapting his work to a Western setting.
Bottom Line – English language adaptation of Rashomon (1950) which isn’t as gripping or enjoyable as the original. The stellar cast that includes Newman, Harvey, Robinson and Shatner helps a bit here, but they never seem to find a way to make this unique enough to help distinguish it from the Japanese. The choice to re-imagine this story in the Old West instead of Japan works well even if it just feels as if this entire story is reenacted in another place and time. As good as this one is, it’s not as powerful as the original by Kurosawa. This is so unfortunate because translating his work into a Western has been successful in the past.
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – Paul Newman wasn’t keen to take the role, but when he heard that his old rival Marlon Brando had turned it down, he accepted the part. (From IMDB)
Rating – BAFTA Worthy (6/10)
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