Movies on the Big Screen as They Were Meant To Be Seen.
Dir: Francis Ford Coppola
Reluctant assassin Martin Sheen leads a motley crew of soldiers upriver to find unhinged and off-the-map colonel Marlon Brando in director Francis Ford Coppola's wildly surreal Vietnam epic. Adapted from Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, and co-starring - among many others - Robert Duvall and Dennis Hopper.
Dir: Steven Spielberg
Director Steven Spielberg and screenwriter Tom Stoppard created one of their most ambitious and acclaimed works with this adaptation of J.G. Ballard's autobiographical novel. A young Christian Bale stars as a boy growing up in Shanghai, where he lives a sheltered life until the Japanese invasion separates him from his parents and changes his life forever. In Spielberg's hands, the result is a character study that is epic and intimate in equal parts, with a stirring score by John Williams.
In 1590, powerful warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi (Masachika Ichimura) seeks to unify all of Japan under his rule. One of the last holdouts is Oshi Castle - often referred to as the Floating Castle – which is surrounded by an enormous lake. Hideyoshi sends his right-hand man, General Ishida (Yusuke Kamiji), and 20,000 soldiers to take the castle, which is defended by only 500 men. The death of his father leaves control of the castle with Narita Nagachika (a bravura Mansai Nomura), but the clumsy child king fails to gather the support of any of the other samurai except childhood friend Tanba (Koichi Sato). But Nagachika refuses to acquiesce to Hideyoshi’s army, and through a mix of self-deprecating humor and unconventional tactics, he is slowly able to connect with the people and fight alongside the hardened samurai who once doubted him. Half David-and-Goliath, against-all-odds jidaigeki and half broad slapstick comedy, FLOATING CASTLE pays tribute to films like Kurosawa’s SEVEN SAMURAI (or even 300) while also being cheeky enough in its homage to have fun with its character archetypes. While the film packs in the action and laughs (especially from Nomura’s wild antics), there is also a rather stunning flood sequence that was the cause of an 18-month delay to the theatrical release. When viewed in light of the tragedy of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, it makes for one of the most somber and powerful scenes in Japanese cinema this year. In Japanese with English subtitles.