This seems to exist only as a 21 minute fragment, borrowed by the PFA from Tokyo's National Film center for the compilation I just saw. Mansaku Itami directed. Release date according to the PFA was 1932. The fragment contains a relatively complete episode in which a pair of hangers-on persuade a passing stranger, presumably the Peerless Patriot of the English title, to impersonate a master swordsman and lord who's temporarily away. The persuasion scene, at least in English, is pretty hilarious, like Abott and Costello up against a dumb-playing whoever, Mitchum, Eastwood, Mifune. One only begins to suspect the stranger is no fool. The Lord returns just as the stranger has daringly rescued his (?) daughter. Then the Lord (his portrayer a genius of the double-take) tries to thank the stranger only to discover they have the same name. Wordplay leads to a sword fight in which the stranger insists on wielding only a short stick, yet wins so overwhelmingly and good-naturedly that he has to pick up the Master's sword and return it to him several times. End of fragment.
Did the peasants here become the pair at the beginning of "Hidden Fortress," only to become Lucas' robot duo?
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