Tag Archives: Kurosawa

The 100 Greatest Foreign Films courtesy of BBC Culture – Number one? Seven Samurai

Seven samurai posterThree years ago, the BBC polled critics across the world to identify the greatest 100 American Movies, followed by Films of the 21st century and Comedies.

Finally, the spotlight fell on ‘Foreign’ films – those not made in the English language. 209 critics from 43 countries took part.

Bicycle thieves poster

The results were not a surprise to Mamoun, who has given and recorded masterclasses on and introductions to many of the films on the list, particularly the first three.

Above all, Mamoun has given masterclasses on The Seven Samurai in many different countries: from Sydney in Australia to Zimbabwe in Africa; the UK, Greece, Denmark, Norway and Bosnia in Europe; Mumbai in India; Colombo in Sri Lanka; Havana in Cuba; Santiago in Chile, South America; and in California, where the masterclass was given in three different venues (UCLA Extension, CalArts, The Psychoanalytic Centre for California).

Tokyo Story posterA 65-minute version (edited from a four-hour session) was recorded for Channel 4’s series Movie Masterclass. Kurosawa productions acquired the licence for the Channel 4 programme, which was screened on Japan’s NHK.

Mamoun’s brief ‘Encounter with Kurosawacan be read here.

 

 

 

 

 

The BBC top 10 list:

10. La Dolce Vita (Federico Fellini, 1960)
9. In the Mood for Love (Wong Kar-wai, 2000)
8. The 400 Blows (François Truffaut, 1959)
7. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963)
6. Persona (Ingmar Bergman, 1966)
5. The Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir, 1939)
4. Rashomon (Akira Kurosawa, 1950)
3. Tokyo Story (Yasujirô Ozu, 1953)
2. Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio de Sica, 1948)
1. Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954)

In the top twenty foreign films are Pather Panchali (Satyajit Ray, 1955) and The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966).

Mamoun has contributed a 45-minute video  to Criterion’s amazing restoration of The Apu Trilogy.

Mamoun produced The Battle of Algiers for C4’s Movie Masterclass, and he presented it as a masterclass at the BFI Southbank. The film was one of more than 25 films that he has presented at the European Film College, including Ozu’s Tokyo Story and de Sica’s Bicycle Thieves.

Masterclasses and introductions can be accessed on Vimeo.

The full list of films can be seen here

 

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Movie Masterclass – Ozu’s ‘Tokyo Story’ at the European Film College

We are pleased to share Mamoun’s masterclass on Ozu’s masterpiece, Tokyo Story. Mamoun has revisited this film several times, but this most recent visit at the European Film College in Ebeltoft allowed him to discuss the film with the students in detail.

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Hayazaka Masterclass at the European Film College postponed

Film maker and educator Mamoun Hassan recently had to postpone his live Movie Masterclass  on composer Fumio Hayazaka: instead the invited audience of students at the European Film College in Denmark requested more time to work with him one to one on their final pieces!

Mamoun nevertheless intends to explore the subject in depth with a Masterclass audience at some point in the future. This will be the first Masterclass dedicated to a film score.

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Mamoun returns to the European Film College,

Mamoun is providing editing consultancy to the graduating students at the European Film College, Ebeltoft, Denmark, from April 18 – 23. The students present final projects at the end of the 8 ½ month course.

He is also doing a masterclass on Carol Reed‘s Third Man on the 19th, and another masterclass on composer Fumio Hayazaka, one of Cinema’s most original and influential figures and close collaborator with Akira Kurosawa. This is the first masterclass that focusses on a composer – a new direction for masterclasses.

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Introduction to ‘Throne of Blood’ at the NFTS & NFT Event – Throne of Blood 19 March 2012

“There is an intensity in this film that does not let go from beginning to end. ”  Mamoun Hassan on Throne of Blood , March 19 2012

Mamoun was recently invited to introduce a screening of Akira Kurosawa’s 1957 masterpiece ‘Throne of Blood’ at the National Film Theatre, London.

The film is an interpretation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth in the warrior tradition of Japanese myth.

This is Mamoun’s introduction

“Shakespeare is a problem for film makers. He has fantastic and vivid stories and creates characters whose actions and words embody truth like no other writer’s before or since.

The problem is that, just as Mozart was accused of writing too many notes, Shakespeare writes too many words. As Hitchcock said: Cinema is not about a camera looking at actors speaking. But there is also a more fundamental dilemma: Shakespeare’s words are continually painting pictures. There is a constant stream of images, similes and metaphors.

Few directors have found a way of juggling his word pictures and the screen images. Kurosawa is one who has. He abandons Shakespeare’s words entirely but retains Shakespeare’s images in his own way. What we get is both Shakespeare’s poetry and Kurosawa’s poetry.”

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NFTS & NFT Event – Throne of Blood

National Film Theatre 19 March 2012

As part of the National Film & Television School’s Screen Arts presentation, in collaboration with the National Film Theatre, Mamoun introduces Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood, touching on Shakespeare on film.

A direct link will be posted when it is live on their website.

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Preview of ‘Encounter with Kurosawa’

Mamoun previews a section from work in progress.

The chapter is entitled: ‘Encounter with Kurosawa

Content Copyright©Mamoun Hassan 2011

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