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Clickety-Clack (Dodesukaden)

Clickety-Clack (Dodesukaden) (1970)


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Release Date: Oct 31, 1970 Wide



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Average Rating: 3.9/5
User Ratings: 1,891

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Movie Info

Dodes'ka-Den (aka Dodesukaden) was Japanese filmmaker Akira Kurosawa's first project since Red Beard (1965), and his first ever in color. Kurosawa focuses this time on Tokyo slum life. We watch as a variety of unfortunates debase themselves to survive, yet, somehow, emerge with more innate dignity than the so-called "better" people. While it seems inconceivable that Dodes'ka-Den would fail at the box office, fail it did upon its original release. The Japanese distributors hastily pared down the


Drama, Science Fiction & Fantasy



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All Critics (7) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (3) | DVD (4)

This was one of Kurosawa's rare films set in modern times - though it has a lyrical, almost fairy tale quality that makes it feel like it could have been plucked out of ancient mythology.

November 22, 2010 Full Review Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune
Sarasota Herald-Tribune

The ultimate effect is the cinematic equivalent of a neon sign: full of flash and color, but never illuminating.

April 20, 2010 Full Review Source: Film Snobbery
Film Snobbery

Everything else feels so hollow and occasionally phony, that its hard not to view the film as one of Kurosawas weakest efforts.

July 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Movie Metropolis
Movie Metropolis

more sober and cynical than sentimental and cathartic, a pre-cursor to the bleak, destitute cosmos of Harmony Korine and Larry Clarke

April 13, 2009 Full Review Source:

even if the film does not stand up with Kurosawa's better known works, it is still an intriguing, if only semi-successful, experiment that suggests the great director's willingess to expand his palette

March 30, 2009 Full Review Source: Q Network Film Desk
Q Network Film Desk

Dodes'ka-den's forgotten souls enact their tribulations only in brief, impressionistic strokes, as apt to lapse into candy-coated reverie as they are to stare down the demons of fiscal and moral poverty.

March 17, 2009 Full Review Source: Slant Magazine
Slant Magazine

The execution is rather crude.

July 12, 2006 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Clickety-Clack (Dodesukaden)

the watching of this film was bitter sweet for me. bitter because this is the last of kurosawa's films that i needed to see, ive watched all 30, and there are no more purely kurosawa films left for me to pursue (although i can go after the few that he worked on in smaller capacities). watching this film was sweet in that i can now emphatically say that kurosawa never made a film that was even average or worse. some werent great but they were all good enough to recommend and watch more than once. as for this film, kurosawa's first color piece is a beautiful one. the film details the lives of many people living in a slum together, and while it never really crosses the stories over it is more a commentary on slum life and human nature. depravity reigns heavy and many of the stories were incredibly touching despite the lack of hope the characters face. the cinematography and art direction were especially impressive, and i was overcome with the reality of how unfortunate it is that this film was so unsuccessful that it drove kurosawa to a suicide attempt, which was ironic considering a character in the film attempts suicide and is tricked by the crafty old man into seeing that life is valuable. a beautiful and worthwhile film.
August 27, 2009
danny d

Super Reviewer

With "Dodes 'Ka-Den," Akira Kurosawa goes against the grain in depicting a shantytown, with only a handful scenes set outside of its boundary, by not going the neorealist route. Instead of muting the color schemes to make the situation look as bleak as possible, the color palette here is as bright as possible to connote a vibrant, if struggling, community. This does not mean he is romanticizing or glamorizing the lives of the denizens, as the tragedies and heartbreaks of their daily lives take center stage in a series of vignettes.

And the first scene of "Dodes 'Ka-Den" sets the stage for everything else that follows with a young man(Yoshitaka Zushi) praying with his mother(Kin Sugai) before going off to work. But it is an imaginary job, as he only dreams of driving a trolley(dreams play a huge role in the movie), venturing away from home as the viewer is introduced to his fellow characters. With him, Akira Kurosawa seems to be saying that as long as he is not hurting anyone, where is the harm? This stands for the other characters, too, despite their flaws and handicaps.
May 17, 2010
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

Much like a companion piece to Kurosawa's earlier film The Lower Depths. However, there is a greater ensemble aspect in this film, whereas in The Lower Depths the story of Mifune was at the centre. I had read some mixed reviews about this film, but by the end I was convinced that this is a very good film which highlights the existential angst of poor people and also has a humane aspect to it. The multiple story lines are not very interesting at first, which is probably the only criticism of the film. However, about half way through everything falls into place and the film is very interesting to watch. Katsuko's storyline is the most watchable. The scene where she is raped by her adoptive father is very horrifying and unsettling. Kurosawa treads a very fine line throughout this film between sentimentalizing his character's and their plight. At times it feels that he is, at others it feels that he is not. Another criticism is that it was a bit excessive. Highlights of the film include the artwork and the apocalyptic imagery at times. Wonderful experimentation by Kurosawa with set design in this film.
December 26, 2011
Gevvy Sidhu

Super Reviewer

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Foreign Titles

  • Dodeskaden - Menschen im Abseits (DE)
  • Dodes'ka-den (Dodesukaden) (UK)
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