Dir. Akira Kurosawa (1961). This story of a mercenary masterless samurai selling his sevices to two rival smalltown factions and then sitting back to watch the guys whack one another is a far cry from those earlier films of the director that bore a touch of sentimentality. This bracing movie overflows with black humor and makes effective use of the wide screen. The material was turned into a spaghetti western a few years later when Sergio Leone remade it as A Fistful of Dollars.
Wed., Feb. 3, 1:30, 5:25 & 9:20 p.m., 2010

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