Captured by Sunlight: Kurosawa’s ‘Kagemusha’ Meets Spielberg’s ‘War Horse’

Photo: Dreamworks Pictures

I couldn’t help but see the natural visual comparison between Akira Kurosawa‘s Kagemusha and Steven Spielberg‘s War Horse when I saw the above moment smack-bad in the middle of the new trailer for War Horse that was just released this morning.

Spielberg has said many times he was influenced by Kurosawa’s work. He convinced Warner Bros. to buy the international rights to Dreams, has referred to him as “the pictorial Shakespeare of our time,” participated in celebrating his 99th and 100th birthday with the Anaheim Akira Kurosawa School of Film and, along with George Lucas, paid tribute to Kurosawa when he was given an Honorary Award by the Academy in 1990 (video here).

So you be the judge, look at the photo above from War Horse and the one below from Kagemusha and you tell me if the inspiration isn’t obviously there.

Photo: Criterion Collection

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