Akira Kurosawa’s great, furious adaptation of two stories by Ryunosuke Akutagawa. The plot is a classic demonstration of the relativity of “truth”: four diverging views of a murder and rape, three by the killer and his victims, one by a “detached” observer. The realization is superb--matchless cinematography by Kazuo Miyagawa, brilliant performances by Toshiro Mifune (left), Machiko Kyo (right), Mayasuki Mori and Takashi Shimura. This is the first of several landmark films that, in the early ‘50s, opened the world of Japanese cinema to the West. Note that “Rashomon” will be followed at 11:30 p.m. by another Kurosawa classic, “Seven Samurai,” which also airs earlier, at 5 p.m. (Bravo Monday at 10 p.m.).
Other selected four-star films airing this week:
It Happened One Night / Showtime Tuesday, 11 a.m.
Anatomy of a Murder / TMC, early Thursday, 6:50 a.m.
Sullivan’s Travels / AMC, Thursday, 11 a.m.
Death in Venice / Cinemax, 11:15 a.m.
The Killers (1946), AMC, Thursday, 12:45 p.m. and early Friday, 4 a.m.
The Birds / TNT, Thursday, 9 p.m.