ARRAY(0xbfb98018)
 
Profile for Penny N. Vilela > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Penny N. Vilela
Top Reviewer Ranking: 528,484
Helpful Votes: 0

Guidelines: Learn more about the ins and outs of Amazon Communities.

Reviews Written by
Penny N. Vilela (Oakhurst, California United States)

Page: 1
pixel
The Emperor and the Wolf: The Lives and Films of Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune
The Emperor and the Wolf: The Lives and Films of Akira Kurosawa and Toshiro Mifune
by Stuart Galbraith
Edition: Hardcover
14 used & new from CDN$ 77.01

3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, but ultimately disappointing, Aug. 2 2002
This is a good not excellent book. I would rather call it a filmography than a biography. Galbraith spends much to much time on critics re-hashed reviews and incomplete and sometimes inaccurate facts that do nothing but leave the reader wondering. One comes away with the feeling that perhaps Galbraith does not particularily like either of these two great men. Most of the positive comments on Mifune and Kurosawa come from other people. Galbraith seems to take pleasure in pointing out each mans short comings and skimming over their accomplishments. His writing style is rather plebian and I wonder if perhaps he got in over his head with this book. Hopefully someone will write a true biography on both these great men one day. I for one cannot wait! These two luminaries deserve much better!

Throne of Blood
Throne of Blood
VHS
3 used & new from CDN$ 25.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Lean and Mean!, Aug. 30 2001
This review is from: Throne of Blood (VHS Tape)
An electrifing performance by Toshiro Mifune dominates this superb film!!! This is Kurosawa at his best. Spartan sets, crisp dialogue and extremely unsympathetic characters make this movie a tour do force of extremism! Of all Kurosawa's film this is the most surreal. There is nothing warm or smooth in this film. It is all right angles and cold calculation. The entire cast is magnificent. The sets are oppressive yet beautiful. The fog is like an approaching army. All of these elements together make for one of the best films I have ever seen. Mifune's death scene is not to be believed. Incredible!!!

Bad Sleep Well, the
Bad Sleep Well, the
VHS
2 used & new from CDN$ 24.87

5.0 out of 5 stars Not so sweet revenge!, Aug. 18 2001
This review is from: Bad Sleep Well, the (VHS Tape)
It amazes me how contempory Kurosawa's movies are. The plot and characters in this film are as believable today as they were forty years ago. Boy, does this film run hot and cold! One moment is chillingly serious and the next is incredibly funny. The best scene in the movie is when Mifune takes the "dead" official to his own funeral. Mifune's whistle is wonderfully diabolical! Mori cooking dinner is a riot! There is a very funny moment when Mifune plants the five million yen in the unsuspecting officials briefcase. As with most Kurosawa films this one hasn't a wasted moment. The acting is superb and the script is so well written that what could have been a very confusing story is clear as a bell. The moral of this movie.....Be careful what you ask for you might get it!

Drunken Angel
Drunken Angel
VHS
2 used & new from CDN$ 9.97

5.0 out of 5 stars A Scathing Commentary, July 31 2001
This review is from: Drunken Angel (VHS Tape)
Unsentimental, gripping morality tale of post war Japan. This is a simple story with the sharpness and balance of a finely crafted sword. Mifune and Shimura play off each other beautifully! Vivid images remain long after the film is over. Who is the drunken angel? It could be either Mifune or Shimura. We are told it is Shimura. I'm not so sure!

Drunken Angel
Drunken Angel
VHS
2 used & new from CDN$ 9.97

5.0 out of 5 stars A Scathing Commentary, July 28 2001
This review is from: Drunken Angel (VHS Tape)
Unsentimental, gripping morality tale of Japanese society after WW2. This is a simple story with the sharpness and balance of a finely crafted sword! Mifune and Shimura play off each other beautifully. Who is the drunken angel? We are told it is Shimura. But..... as Donald Richie says in his book on Kurosawa, Mifune is also an angel, though of a darker breed. Vivid images remain with you long after the film is over and respect for all those involved increases with each viewing!

Idiot [Import]
Idiot [Import]
VHS

4.0 out of 5 stars This is a hard one!, July 19 2001
This review is from: Idiot [Import] (VHS Tape)
"The Idiot" is a very complicated story and fitting all the characters and subplots into a two and a half hour movie does not work. I read that the studio that released it cut the film from six hours to the length we see. They should have left it alone. The characters are fascinating. The acting is a bit over the top. Mifune can get away with chewing the scenery but some of the other actors are not as fortunate. Don't let this review turn you off. It is an engrossing film with some memorable moments!

Stray Dog
Stray Dog
VHS
4 used & new from CDN$ 9.98

5.0 out of 5 stars A Wild Ride, July 5 2001
This review is from: Stray Dog (VHS Tape)
This is one of the most thoroughly entertaining movies I have ever seen! The first forty minutes are stunningly sleazy! A delight to the eyes and ears. The middle is a bit technical but still incredibly fascinating. The last thirty minutes takes you on a rollercoaster ride you won't soon forget! It is my favorite of all Kurosawa/Mifune collaborations! I'm not going to say more except.....Sit back and enjoy!!!

Page: 1