- Audio Commentary by Kurosawa Biographer Stephen Prince
- Theatrical Trailer
- Documentaries: A Message from Akira Kurosawa: For Beautiful Movies and Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create.
- Number of Discs: 2
- Rated: Not Rated
- Run Time: 2 hours, 23 minutes
- Video: Black & White
- Released: January 16, 2004
- Originally Released: 1952
- Label: Criterion
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
- Special Edition
- Additional Release Material:
- Trailers: Original Theatrical Trailer
- Audio Commentary: Stephen Prince - Author of "The Warrior's Camera: The Cinema of Akira Kurosawa"
- "A Message From Akira Kurosawa" (90 Minutes)
- "Akira Kurosawa: To Create is Beautiful" (41 Minutes)
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Chicago Sun-Times - 09/29/1996
"...Kurosawa opens his story with a deliberate, low-key pacing, although at the end there is rage against the dying of the light..."
Sight and Sound - 11/01/2003
"...Kurosawa never lets us forget that Watanabe's courage is as great as that of any warrior....A tale of heroism..."
USA Today - 01/09/2004
"[An] extraordinary urban epic with an unusual two-part story construction that turns out to be the right narrative choice."
Premiere - 03/01/2004
"[With] storytelling brio, sharp observation, and incredible emotional power..."
Uncut - 01/01/2004
"Takashi Shimura delivers a fine, understated performance..."
Empire - 08/01/2008
4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]his moving melodrama continued Kurosawa's revolt against narrative linearity....This is a masterpiece of humanist cinema..."
Description by OLDIES.com:
Considered by many to be Akira Kurosawa's greatest achievement, Ikiru presents the director at his most compassionate - affirming life through the exploration of a man's death. Takashi Shimura portrays Kanji Watanabe, an aging bureaucrat with stomach cancer forced to strip the veneer from his existence and find meaning in his final days. Told in two parts, Ikiru offers Watanabe's quest in the present, and then through a series of flashbacks. The result is a multifaceted look at a life through a prism of perspectives, resulting in the full portrait of a misunderstood man.
A powerful, thought-provoking drama about a petty bureaucrat who discovers that he is dying of cancer. Coming to the realization that his life has been a meaningless quest for following petty company rules, he tries to create one thing of lasting worth.