Conflicting Stories in Rashômon

         Tonight in class we watched Rashomon, directed in 1950 by Akira Kurosawa. Rashômon is an interesting film in which two stories are basically tied together to form on several different storylines. The film is presented in black and white with little sound. I noticed that the use of light the director used helped to make the story fit together. The characters showed emotion well, helping the viewer to better understand what the film was about without dialogue actually having to be spoken.

         Rashômon was confusing to me at times because I could not always tell the intent of the characters and what their objective was in scenes of the film. The story ultimately includes a rape and death of a man resulting from a murder. Stories given by characters in the movie seem to differ. The different points of view given by the characters try to force the viewer to make a choice about which story is actually factual.

         The film Rashômon gives a great look into the idea of contradictory ideas. As the individual narrators such as the bandit, the wife, the husband through a medium, and the woodcutter in the film are trying to put together their thoughts, ideas, and memories of the act, they each differ. The idea of the film represents and can relate to everyday real life experiences. For example, when a group of children are around one another and something happens, each child gives a different story. In instances throughout life, individuals are left to decide what story to believe and what facts to take into consideration in order to make an educated idea of what really happened in an instance. The samurai, husband of the raped wife, in the film is the key character depicted differently in each story, so that the film viewer is left to decide which way he really died.

         This film basically reminded me of the movie and game called Clue, in which individuals have to put together ideas to decide the murderer. Overall, I really enjoyed this film. The film was interesting and kept my attention throughout class. After watching the film, I would recommend it to other students who are interested in cinema. I found this film to be remarkable.

Ashley Henderson

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