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Film Series Opens with Kurosawa Classic

By Rod Jones

The Oklahoma City University Film Institute’s next series is based on the theme “On Being Mortal” for its 35th year, which will open at 2 p.m. Sept. 18 with Akira Kurosawa’s “Ikiru.” All films in the series will be screened free to the public in the Kerr McGee Auditorium of Meinders School of Business at N.W. 27th Street and McKinley Avenue.

The series is supported in part by the Thatcher Hoffman Smith Endowment Fund and endowments through OCU and the Oklahoma City Community Foundation.

“Ikiru,” which translates as “to live” in English, is a humanist tale about a man facing his own mortality. Legendary Japanese director Kurosawa considered it his most intimate film and his personal favorite.

The Chicago Tribune stated in its review: “If you have never seen it, you should. If you have seen it before, your admiration will only increase.”

The theme of this year’s season is based on Atul Gawande’s recent book “Being Mortal.” Harbour Winn, director of the series, said the films in the series were selected to show “how we, as individuals and a culture, confront, avoid and deal with finitude.” Topics covered include how societies deal with people who are aging, the importance of life and how it is lived with need for a healthy and ethical awareness in knowing we all ultimately die.

A discussion session follows each film screening for those who wish to participate. Other dates and films in the series are:

* Oct. 2, Christian Petzold’s “Phoenix”

* Oct. 16, Zhang Yimou’s “Coming Home”

* Oct. 30, Naji Abu Nowar’s “Theeb”

* Jan. 22, Francois Truffaut’s “The Last Metro”

* Feb. 5, Lasse Hallstrom’s “My Life as a Dog”

* Feb. 19, Asghar Farhadi’s “Fireworks Wednesday”

* March 5, Ciro Guerra’s “Embrace of the Serpent”

For more information about the series, call 405-208-5707 or visit okcufilmlit.org.

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