Cinema: Learning to Accept History

Learning to Accept History

In RHAPSODY IN AUGUST, three generations of a Japanese family contemplate a great and terrible event, the bombing of Nagasaki. But the milieu director Akira Kurosawa creates for their deliberations is small and serene: a farm where a grandmother, who witnessed the blast from afar and lost her husband in it, gently and indirectly informs her grandchildren about the past. And about the proper way to confront it -- with calm, unblinking acceptance. This is a part of their education their parents have neglected. For the middle generation, seeking economic advantage, especially with a branch of the family that has immigrated...

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