Best Japanese movies

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1.
Ran (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
In Medieval Japan, an elderly warlord retires, handing over his empire to his three sons. However, he vastly underestimates how the new-found power will corrupt them and cause them to turn on each other...and him. (162 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
“ Ultimate Greek tragedy written by Shakespeare and directed by master Kurosawa. One of the best movies ever made. ” - gandzetina
 
2.
Woman in the Dunes (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
An entomologist on vacation is trapped by local villagers into living with a woman whose life task is shoveling sand for them. (123 mins.)
“ Pure metaphysical journey on which Tarkovskiy learned his craft. Visual feast. ” - gandzetina
 
3.
Samurai Rebellion (1967)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
The mother of a feudal lord's only heir is kidnapped away from her husband by the lord. The husband and his samurai father must decide whether to accept the unjust decision, or risk death to get her back. (128 mins.)
“ It is about pride, dignity, self respect, cold steel and some dead bodies. Best samurai movie of them all. ” - gandzetina
 
4.
Seven Samurai (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  
A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves. (207 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
“ Sushi western! ” - gandzetina
 
5.
Onibaba (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Two women kill samurai and sell their belongings for a living. While one of them is having an affair with their neighbor, the other woman meets a mysterious samurai wearing a bizarre mask. (103 mins.)
Director: Kaneto Shindô
“ Well, this is hard to explain. It is a huge allegory about demons deep inside of human beings. With some horror elements. ” - gandzetina
 
6.
Ugetsu (1953)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A tale of ambition, family, love, and war set in the midst of the Japanese Civil Wars of the sixteenth century. (96 mins.)
Director: Kenji Mizoguchi
“ Lyrical ghost story of the great craftsman Mizoguchi. ” - gandzetina
 
7.
Harakiri (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  
An elder ronin samurai arrives at a feudal lord's home and requests an honorable place to commit suicide. But when the ronin inquires about a younger samurai who arrived before him things take an unexpected turn. (133 mins.)
“ Kobayashi is engaged director. He always wants to send a massage and he always delivers it. With the shocking accuracy. ” - gandzetina
 
8.
Throne of Blood (1957)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A war-hardened general, egged on by his ambitious wife, works to fulfill a prophecy that he would become lord of Spider's Web Castle. (110 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
“ This is 3rd Kurosawa, I know. But hay, he was kind of Shakespeare of our days. And this Lady Macbeth proves it. ” - gandzetina
 
9.
The Sword of Doom (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Through his unconscionable actions against others, a sociopath samurai builds a trail of vendettas that follow him closely. (119 mins.)
Director: Kihachi Okamoto
“ Saber Dance with the shocking body count and one of the best fight scenes in the history of cinema at the end of the movie. ” - gandzetina
 
10.
Kill! (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Two ronin - an ex-samurai and an ex-farmer - get caught up in a local official's complex game of murder and betrayal. (115 mins.)
Director: Kihachi Okamoto
“ Another samurai flick not to miss. Tatsuya Nakadai was Toshiro Mifune of his days. Toshiro was more of a Marcello Mastoianni with the sword in that time. This is classic western with some elements of humor. ” - gandzetina
 
11.
Assassination (1964)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In 1863, when Americans warships approach Japan, a enigmatic ronin becomes a important figure in a complex game of power between the Shogunate and the empire. (104 mins.)
“ My heart is bleeding this didn't feet in top ten! I made some bad mistake, definitely. It is political samurai thriller with film-noir aesthetic and some amazing narrative skills that inspired Alejandro Inaritu. Cross my heart. ” - gandzetina
 
12.
In the Realm of the Senses (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A passionate telling of the story of Sada Abe, a woman whose affair with her master led to a sexual obsession which then came to a violent end. (109 mins.)
Director: Nagisa Ôshima
“ Well, this is really shocking movie! It is about lust...and nothing else. There are lot of sex (I mean, reaaaaly sex) and some repugnant surgery out of control skills there. Pure masterpiece. ” - gandzetina
 
13.
Sansho the Bailiff (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
In medieval Japan, a compassionate governor is sent into exile. His wife and children try to join him, but are separated, and the children grow up amid suffering and oppression. (124 mins.)
Director: Kenji Mizoguchi
“ Kenji was one of a kind. As all old masters he also knew that in every flight should be calculated the price of the fall. ” - gandzetina
 
14.
The Burmese Harp (1956)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
In the War's closing days, when a conscience-driven Japanese soldier fails to get his countrymen to surrender to overwhelming force, he adopts the lifestyle of a Buddhist monk. (116 mins.)
Director: Kon Ichikawa
“ Beautiful, lyrical and naive. And we are talking about Japanese soldiers in WWII. ” - gandzetina
 
15.
The Ballad of Narayama (1983)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
In a poor 19th century rural Japanese village, everyone who reaches the age of 70 has to climb a nearby mountain to die. An old woman is getting close to the cut-off age, and we follow her last days with her family. (130 mins.)
Director: Shôhei Imamura
“ So close to real life that it is hard to bear. ” - gandzetina