In 1185, the Heike family fights against the Minamoto family. After a bloody naval battle in the Pacific Ocean, Yoshitsune Minamoto defeats the enemy and the survivals commit suicide. When the triumphant Yoshitsune arrives in Kyoto, his brother, the Shogun Yoritomo, is lured and orders his men to arrest Yoshitsune. However, Yoshitsune escapes with six loyal samurais led by Benkei and they head to the country of his only friend Idehira Fukiwara. Nearby the border, after crossing the forest disguised as monks, their smiley conveyor Suruga discloses that they are Yoshitsune and the six samurais and advises that the fearful Kagiwara and his soldiers are waiting for them in the border to arrest them. Yoshitsune disguises as a carrier and Benkei has to convince Kagiwara that they are six monks traveling to collect donation to build a large temple in Kyoto. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Production had to be halted briefly during production of the film as Japan surrendered, bringing an end to the hostilities of World War II. Akira Kurosawa recollected breaking during production to listen to the address by Emperor Hirohito on August 15th, 1945. See more »
This film is just less than an hour long and tells a simple tale about a warrior with his six followers (one is a "driver" who almost reminds me of a Japanese Stan Laurel) and their quest to move on. They disguise themselves as monks. The film is set in the year 1195. The second half of the film is better, where they have to prove to others that they indeed are monks. The tension, including facing otherwise certain death, is extremely well done. I labeled the film curious due to its simplicity in telling the story. Kurosawa is rarely this straightforward, usually there are interesting twists and turns. That said, this watchable, there is a little comic relief, but it is not A list Kurosawa. Thats fine in and of itself.
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