Apr 26th International Film Appreciation (Red Beard)

Screening time: 19:00,26th Apr, 2021

Venue: D-hall of MUST

Limited seats due to epidemic prevention requirements,only for students enrolled in this course.

NAME: Red Beard

185min | Comedy | 1965 | Japan | Japanese

Directed :Akira Kurosawa

Writers  :Akira Kurosawa , Masato Ide, Hideo Oguni ,Ryuzo Kikushima

Stars    :Toshiro Mifune, Yūzō Kayama, Tsutomu Yamazaki


Trained in a Dutch medical school in Nagasaki, the young and arrogant doctor Noboru Yasumoto aspires to the status of personal physician of the Shogunate, a position currently held by a close relative. Yasumoto believes that he should progress through the safe, and well-protected, army structure of medical education. However, for Yasumoto's post-graduate medical training, he has been assigned to a rural clinic under the guidance of Akahige ("Red Beard"), Dr. Kyojō Niide. Under a gruff exterior, Dr. Niide is a compassionate clinic director.

Initially, Yasumoto is livid at his posting, believing that he has little to gain from working under Red Beard. Yasumoto feels that Red Beard is only interested in seeing Yasumoto's medical notes from Nagasaki, and he rebels against the clinic director. He refuses to see patients or to wear his uniform, disdains the food and spartan environment, and enters the forbidden garden where he meets "The Mantis", a mysterious patient that only Dr. Niide can treat.

As Yasumoto struggles to come to terms with his situation, the film tells the story of a few of the clinic's patients. One of them is Rokusuke, a dying man whom Dr. Niide discerns is troubled by a secret misery that is only revealed when his desperately unhappy daughter shows up. Another is Sahachi, a well-loved man of the town known for his generosity to his neighbors, who has a tragic connection to a woman whose corpse is discovered after a landslide. Dr. Niide brings Yasumoto along to rescue a sick twelve-year-old girl, Otoyo, from a brothel (fighting off a local gang of thugs to do so) and then assigns the girl to Yasumoto as his first patient. Through his efforts to heal the traumatized girl, Yasumoto begins to understand the magnitude of cruelty and suffering around him as well as his power to ease that suffering, and learns to regret his vanity and selfishness.

Yasumoto's former fiancée, Chigusa, had been unfaithful to him, ending their engagement, and Yasumoto learns that she now has a child with her new lover. Chigusa's younger sister, Masae, visits the clinic to check in on Yasumoto. She later makes a kimono for Otoyo, showing compassion that suggests she might be a good match for Yasumoto. Yasumoto's mother likes Masae, and suggests the marriage. When the brothel's madam comes to the clinic to claim Otoyo and take her back to the brothel, the doctors and clinic staff refuse to let Otoyo go, and chase the madam away.

When Yasumoto himself falls ill, Dr. Niide asks Otoyo to nurse him back to health, knowing that caring for Yasumoto will also be part of her own continued healing. Later, when a local boy, Chôji, is caught stealing food from the clinic, Otoyo shows him compassion and befriends him, passing on the compassion she received from Niide and Yasumoto. When Chôji and his destitute family try to escape their misery by taking poison together, the clinic doctors work to save them.

Yasumoto is offered the position as personal physician to the Shogunate he had so coveted. He agrees to marry Masae, but at the wedding announces that he will not accept the new position, but will stay at the clinic, turning down a comfortable and prestigious place in society to continue serving the poor alongside Dr. Niide.


Blue Ribbon Award for Best Film

Mainichi Film Award for Best Film

Kinema Junpo Award for Best Film

Volpi Cup for Best Actor

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