The Human Condition (1959-61)- Masaki Kobayashi
Verdict: Watch it!
Follow Kaji, a Japanese humanist, pacifist, and socialist, who is forced to live in a state of constant contradiction as a labor camp supervisor, then a soldier, and finally, as a POW during WWII. What begins as a basic story about a man that just can’t catch a break, soon transforms itself into a gorgeous, superbly acted, and direct parallel to Albert Camus’s The Myth of Sisyphus.
I have never seen a film more directly address the modern dilemma: finding and maintaining true humanity. Kaji, despite his faults, is one of our best examples to hold onto. His journey is both devastating and remarkably hopeful. He is a man who becomes worthy of the name “man,” and he fights to maintain that description. The Human Condition earns my highest possible recommendation. Watch it!