Independent Auto-ethnography: Japanese Film Experience.

I pride myself on my ability to find time to watch movies and TV shows. It’s a rather incredible gift. A pointless one, until now.

For my Digital Asia class, I have to research Asian culture and discuss my experience of it. I’m a typical white boy and don’t have that much experience with any culture in general. I’ve never been overseas at all, I am going to Japan at the end of the year and I’m more than ready for that culture shock.

For my Digital Artefact I’m going to be doing so research into Japanese films. I’ve watched countless movies. I wouldn’t be able to count how many i’ve watched in the last year or two. I also try to watch a wide variety of different films, and different genres. E.g Horror, Action, Drama, Rom-coms, and the rest.

I have never watched a Japanese Film. I was going to jump head first into a doozy of a film. “Seven Samurai” (1954), directed by Akira Kurosawa. A 3 hour and 27 minute long film.

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A highly regarded film which has inspired various other directors like Quentin Tarantino, with his incredible use of camera angles, blocking and framing.

 

Akira Kurosawa’s brilliance has caused dozens videos analysing his techniques.

 

I chose not to watch “Seven Samurai” just yet.

I’ll watch “The Hidden Fortress” (1958), directed by Akira Kurosawa.

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A 2 hour and 19 minute film about two peasants who unbeknownst to them, are guiding a Princess and her General.

“The Hidden Fortress” has inspired some brilliant films, one in particular that i’m more than positive everyone knows. George Lucas’ “Star Wars” (1977). There’s a parallel with both stories. Both with similar stories, of course with different aspects and twists.

 

In this video, Lucas discusses his appreciation of Akira Kurosawa and his direction techniques. In particular his camera angles and framing.

For my digital artefact for my Digital Asia class, I’ll be discussing my experience of Kurosawa’s work. I’ll give my perspective on the quality of the film and i’ll be researching into how he’s inspired present day directors. I’ll discuss my experience through blog posts, filled with videos and images. It will be a little challenging, considering I haven’t experienced this type of film before, and also I hate reading. So subtitles will be a huge pain.

The films I’ve already experienced, like “Akira” (1988), have been a massive culture shock (Akira was just a shocking film in general). These films have shed light on the cultures from which the film originated, pushing me out of my comfort zone. It’s been incredible. It’s inspired me to research into various different asian cultures, Japan in particular. I’m really excited to experience Kurosawa’s films and to discuss it with you.

 

 

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