This article contains spoilers — I highly recommend watching the movie before reading.

*Managing Editor’s note: Absolutely recommend, from my own point of view.

The legendary filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, who also made “Seven Samurai,” pioneered modern film in his mult-faceted “Rashomon (1950).” The film is primarily known for being the first of its kind: it tells a story from multiple points of view — in this case, the murder of a man in the jungle. Each witness kneels before a court and tells their story, and each tale is vastly different from the last.

At its core, “Rashomon” is about human nature and all that it is capable of. When you have multiple storylines playing out differently, with every single one of them having a horrific ending — not only does it feel like truth is far out of reach, but it also feels like human beings are not capable of goodness, any way you tell it. No matter what happens, it always winds up bad, or so it seems.

During the movie a priest, a commoner and a woodcutter are all recounting the court scenes, and the priest says that, “I don’t want to hear it. No more horror stories.”

The commoner responds, “They are common stories these days. I even heard that the demon living here in Rashomon fled in fear of the ferocity of man.”

These are the primary themes and ideas that make “Rashomon” an excellent film that has been considered by many to be one of the greatest of all time.

There are several aspects to this movie that also push it above and beyond — the performance of the bandit, played by Toshiro Mifune, the pioneering cinematography, the themes of justice and whether or not it is actually attainable, or the themes of women’s roles in older Japanese culture.