22 April 2014 11:00 AM, PDT | Moviefone | See recent Moviefone news »

Why is "Seven Samurai" considered one of the greatest films ever made? I'd answer that by telling you to go watch it right now, but you probably don't have 3 hours and 27 minutes free at the moment. (It goes by super fast, though, which is one of the reasons the movie is great.)

One reason is simply the movie's vast influence. Released 60 years ago this week in Japan (on April 26, 1954), Akira Kurosawa's epic has had an incalculable impact on adventure filmmaking for six decades. Some of your favorite movies owe a huge debt to "Seven Samurai," and you may not even realize it.

The movie's plot has proved simple but durable: The residents of a farming village are beset by roving bandits until they hire a septet of ronin to defend them. Despite the lengthy running time, that's pretty much it, plus a lot of character development so that you »

- Gary Susman

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