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Sanshiro Sugata (1943)

Sugata Sanshirô (original title)
Sugata, a young man, struggles to learn the nuance and meaning of judo, and in doing so comes to learn something of the meaning of life.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Denjirô Ôkôchi ...
Susumu Fujita ...
Yukiko Todoroki ...
Ryûnosuke Tsukigata ...
Hansuke Murai, Sayo's father
Ranko Hanai ...
Sugisaku Aoyama ...
Tsunetami Iinuma
Ichirô Sugai ...
Police Chief Mishima
Yoshio Kosugi ...
Master Saburo Monma
Kokuten Kôdô ...
Buddhist Priest
Michisaburo Segawa ...
Akitake Kôno ...
Sôji Kiyokawa ...
Kunio Mita ...
Akira Nakamura ...
Toranosuke Niizeki


Sanshiro, a strong stubborn youth, comes to the city to apprentice at a jujitsu school. His first night, he sees Yano in action, a master of judo, a more spiritual art, and he begs to be Yano's student. As the youth learns technique, he must also learn "satori," the calm acceptance of Nature's law. If he can balance strength and control, then judo may become the training regimen for the city's police, Sanshiro can gain respect from an old teacher in a jujitsu school, and he can win the hand of Sayo, that teacher's daughter, who is also sought by jujitsu's finest master, the implacable Higaki, who vows to kill Sanshiro in a midnight fight on a windswept mountainside. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

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Release Date:

28 April 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sanshiro Sugata  »

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Technical Specs


| (original)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


This was Akira Kurosawa's first film as director, and he knew he wanted to make the picture before the novel had even been released, basing his judgments off of advertisements he had seen. See more »


Featured in Kurosawa: The Last Emperor (1999) See more »

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User Reviews

A master piece... one of the greatest.
14 July 2007 | by (India) – See all my reviews

I had never heard of Akira Kurosava. I didn't know anything about Japanese B/W films at all!.

And it proved a blessing for me as I watched this movie without even so much as battling an eyelid. Growing amazed an appreciative at the same time.

There is a strange kind of stillness in Kurosava's direction. Not the stillness to make you impatient but the stillness to make you feel the beauty of the moment, to get inside the character's mind.

It's a story about a lad who is headstrong but learns the truth of life along the way.

It's a movie about Judo and Jujitsu. It's a movie about budding love. It's a movie about a student and a great master. And it's a movie about Kurosava's greatness.

You can watch it for any reason and you'll not be disappointed. I wish all those movie makers of senseless violence, learn something from this one... while I find ways to get my hands on another of Kurosava's master pieces.

11 of 16 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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