Drunken Angel [Criterion Collection] [DVD] [1948]

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Drunken Angel [Criterion Collection] (DVD)  (Black & White)  (Japanese)  1948 - Larger Front
Drunken Angel [Criterion Collection] (DVD) (Black & White) (Japanese) 1948
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Special Features

  • New, restored high-definition digital transfer
  • Audio commentary featuring Japanese-film scholar Donald Richie
  • A 31-minute documentary on the Making of Drunken Angel, created as part of the Toho Masterworks series Akira Kurosawa: It is Wonderful to Create
  • Kurosawa and the censors, a new, 25-minute video piece that looks at the challenges Kurosawa faced in making Drunken Angel
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • Plus: a booklet featuring an essay by cultural historian Ian Buruma and excerpts from Kurosawa's Something Like an Autobiography


Drunken Angel
Originally titled Yoidore tenshi, Drunken Angel was director Akira Kurosawa's first "auteur" project. "I finally discovered myself," he explained later. "It was my picture: I was doing it and no one else." Takashi Shimura plays an alcoholic doctor, running a fleabitten clinic in the slums of Tokyo. Shimura tries to pull himself together long enough to save the life of young hoodlum Toshiro Mifune. The doctor feels that, by saving Mifune, he is retrieving a portion of his own lost youth and idealism. Kurosawa later observed that he had trouble corraling Tohsiro Mifune's improvisational instincts, but that "I did not want to smother that vitality." The end result in Drunken Angel is a supremely satisfying blend of Mifune's rapid-fire excesses and Kurosawa's even-handed control. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Toshiro Mifune
    Toshiro Mifune - Matsunaga
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    Reisaburo Yamamoto - Okada, gang boss
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    Chieko Nakakita - Miyo
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    Noriko Sengoku - Gin
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    Takashi Shimura - Dr. Sanada
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