The films in Eclipse 23 are rather good looking for their age. After all, these pieces are over 60 years old and most likely weren’t stored in the best of manners. All are presented in 1.33:1 fullscreen and black and white, as is to be expected. The video features an abundance of grain and dirt, and there are plenty of scratches in the material. There are also a large number of scenes that are too dark, or bright, for their own good. Overall the films look very good for their age and those coming to this release will get exactly what they are looking for.
Likewise the audio presentation on these four volumes comes in the form of Japanese monoaural with English subtitles. The flat dialogue, music, and effects are exactly what one would expect from films over 60 years old. There are moments where things are nice and crisp, but others where the sound is muted and scratchy. It’s not bad, really, but maintains quality that comes with the territory.
No bonus features are available in this Eclipse release.
If you’re a Kurosawa fan and you don’t have the AK 100 release, Eclipse 23 should be an enticing collection. The first films of the director stand out in many ways. His skills as a director blend with war propaganda to create four fascinating experiences that stand out for their originality and tone. Ultimately it’s the historical value of these films that make them important additions to any Kurosawa fan’s library.