From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Kurosawa first began directing in the 1980s, working on low-budget V-Cinema (direct-to-video) productions such as formula yakuza pictures. In the early 1990s he won a scholarship to the Sundance Institute and was able to study filmmaking in the United States, although he had been directing for nearly ten years professionally.
Kurosawa first achieved international acclaim with his serial killer film Cure (1997). Also that year, Kurosawa experimented by filming two thrillers back-to-back, Serpent's Path and Eyes of the Spider, both of which shared the same premise (a father taking revenge for his child's murder) and lead actor (Sho Aikawa) but spun entirely different stories.
Kurosawa followed up Cure with a semi-sequel in 1999 with Charisma, which established his penchant for apocalyptic imagery and themes of identity and isolation. In 2001 Kurosawa directed Kairo, a film about ghosts invading the world of the living by way of the Internet. More recently Kurosawa has released Bright Future (2003), starring Tadanobu Asano; this is his first film shot using a 24p HiDef camera. Kurosawa followed this with another digital feature, Doppelganger, later the same year.
Style and influences
Kurosawa's directing style has been compared to that of Stanley Kubrick and Andrei Tarkovsky, though he has never expressly listed those directors as influences. In interviews Kurosawa has voiced admiration for American films of the early 1970s.Template:Fact
Many of his films are concerned in some form with the way society shapes the individual, with individuals obsessed with some eccentric project, or how social mechanisms disintegrate when faced with the wholly irrational. Cure is widely cited as the best example of all of these concepts in one film, but they show up in others as well: Bright Future combines the first and second in its plot about a ruminative young man trying to accommodate a jellyfish to live in fresh water, with unexpected results.Template:Fact
Selected filmography as director
- 1997 Cure (キュア Kyua)
- 1998 Serpent's Path (蛇の道 Hebi no michi)
- 1998 Eyes of the Spider (蜘蛛の瞳 Kumo no hitomi)
- 1999 License to Live (ニンゲン合格 Ningen gōkaku)
- 1999 Barren Illusions (大いなる幻影 Ōinaru genei)
- 2000 Charisma (カリスマ Karisuma)
- 2001 Kairo (回路), aka Pulse
- 2001 Seance (降霊 Kōrei)
- 2003 Bright Future (アカルイミライ Akarui mirai)
- 2003 Doppelganger (ドッペルゲンガー Dopperugengā)
- 2005 Loft (ロフト Rofuto)
- 2006 Retribution (叫 Sakebi)