MOVIEmeter
Top 5000
Down 12 this week

Seven Samurai (1954)
"Shichinin no samurai" (original title)

 -  Action | Drama  -  19 November 1956 (USA)
8.8
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 8.8/10 from 180,251 users   Metascore: 99/100
Reviews: 552 user | 142 critic | 5 from Metacritic.com

A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves.

Director:

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
0Check in
0Share...

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 40 titles
created 23 Sep 2011
 
a list of 31 titles
created 10 Feb 2012
 
a list of 30 titles
created 07 Feb 2013
 
a list of 38 titles
created 8 months ago
 
list image
a list of 48 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Seven Samurai" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Seven Samurai (1954)

Seven Samurai (1954) on IMDb 8.8/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Seven Samurai.

User Polls

Top 250 #20 | Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Lured by gold, two greedy peasants escort a man and woman across enemy lines. However, they do not realize that their companions are actually a princess and her general.

Director: Akira Kurosawa
Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Misa Uehara, Minoru Chiaki
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The adventures of a blind, gambling masseur who also happens to be a master swordsman.

Director: Kenji Misumi
Stars: Shintarô Katsu, Masayo Banri, Ryûzô Shimada
Gladiator (2000)
Action | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

When a Roman general is betrayed and his family murdered by an emperor's corrupt son, he comes to Rome as a gladiator to seek revenge.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Connie Nielsen
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

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.

Director: Akira Kurosawa
Stars: Denjirô Ôkôchi, Susumu Fujita, Yukiko Todoroki
Robin Hood (2010)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

In 13th century England, Robin and his band of marauders confront corruption in a local village and lead an uprising against the crown that will forever alter the balance of world power.

Director: Ridley Scott
Stars: Russell Crowe, Cate Blanchett, Matthew Macfadyen
Hidalgo (2004)
Action | Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

In 1890, a down-and-out cowboy and his horse travel to Arabia to compete in a deadly cross desert horse race.

Director: Joe Johnston
Stars: Viggo Mortensen, Omar Sharif, Zuleikha Robinson
Apocalypto (2006)
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

As the Mayan kingdom faces its decline, the rulers insist the key to prosperity is to build more temples and offer human sacrifices. Jaguar Paw, a young man captured for sacrifice, flees to avoid his fate.

Director: Mel Gibson
Stars: Gerardo Taracena, Raoul Trujillo, Dalia Hernández
Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A group of passengers struggle to survive and escape when their ocean liner completely capsizes at sea.

Directors: Ronald Neame, Irwin Allen
Stars: Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine, Shelley Winters
Drama | Action | Adventure
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Zatoichi tries to unrest the mob rule over a small village all while the gang leader's bodyguard is actually the Yojimbo, secretly taking the gang down from the inside. Will the two heroes realize in time that they are on the same side?

Director: Kihachi Okamoto
Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Shintarô Katsu, Ayako Wakao
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The anti-Ching patriots, under the guidance of Ho Kuang-han, have secretly set up their base in Canton, disguised as school masters. During a brutal Manchu attack, Lui manages to escape and... See full summary »

Director: Chia-Liang Liu
Stars: Chia-Hui Liu, Lieh Lo, Chia Yung Liu
Flesh+Blood (1985)
Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A band of medieval mercenaries take revenge on a noble lord who decides not to pay them by kidnapping the betrothed of the noble's son. As the plague and warfare cut a swathe of destruction... See full summary »

Director: Paul Verhoeven
Stars: Rutger Hauer, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tom Burlinson
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Following the death of the second Tokugawa shogun, it is revealed that he was poisoned by retainers of his son Iemitsu in hopes of gaining him the shogunate despite the stammer and ... See full summary »

Director: Kinji Fukasaku
Stars: Kinnosuke Nakamura, Shin'ichi Chiba, Hiroki Matsukata
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Kikuchiyo (as Toshiro Mifune)
...
Keiko Tsushima ...
Yukiko Shimazaki ...
Wife (as Yukio Shimazaki)
Kamatari Fujiwara ...
Farmer Manzo
Daisuke Katô ...
Shichiroji (as Daisake Kato)
Isao Kimura ...
Katsushiro (as Ko Kimura)
Minoru Chiaki ...
Heihachi
Seiji Miyaguchi ...
Yoshio Kosugi ...
Farmer Mosuke
Bokuzen Hidari ...
Farmer Yohei
Yoshio Inaba ...
Yoshio Tsuchiya ...
Farmer Rikichi
Kuninori Kôdô ...
Old Man Gisaku (as Kuninori Todo)
Eijirô Tôno ...
Thief (as Eijiro Tono)
Edit

Storyline

A veteran samurai, who has fallen on hard times, answers a village's request for protection from bandits. He gathers 6 other samurai to help him, and they teach the townspeople how to defend themselves, and they supply the samurai with three small meals a day. The film culminates in a giant battle when 40 bandits attack the village. Written by Colin Tinto <cst@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

samurai | bandit | farmer | battle | rice | See more »

Taglines:

The Mighty Warriors Who Became the Seven National Heroes of a Small Town See more »

Genres:

Action | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 November 1956 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Seven Samurai  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$2,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$21,830 (USA) (30 August 2002)

Gross:

$269,061 (USA) (29 August 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (international) | (2002 re-release) | (original) | (1991 re-release) | (cut) (original) | (re-release) | (restored) | (DVD edition)

Sound Mix:

| (re-release prints)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

First use of a scene which is now commonplace in cinema: The approaching horde coming into view as they crest a hilltop, specifically when Kikuchiyo sees the mounted bandits approaching. See more »

Goofs

In the closing moments of the final battle, the bandits fire two musket shots only seconds apart. It is clear from the plot that at that point they possess only one musket. The black powder muskets of the age required much more time to reload. This error was pointed out in the commentary of the deluxe DVD edition. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Bandit second-in-command: We'll take this place next.
Bandit Chief: We took it last autumn. They haven't got anything worth taking yet. Let's wait.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Arguably, the best samurai film ever made

Though its biblical connotation is not the happiest one ("Seven Deadly Sins") number seven, omnipresent in our (7 days a) weekly cycles, seems to have been a lucky number in the world of cinema. Several very solid and some great movies have this number in their title, starting with gag-wise incredibly inventive Seven Chances (1925) from genius of silent era Buster Keaton, Frank Borzage's silent version of classic melodrama 7th Heaven (1927), Walt Disney's first feature-length animated movie, Snowhite and Seven Dwarfs (1940), recognized as an instant classic and remained so ever after, Stanley Donen's ear-pleasing, eye-riveting musical Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954), staged in western milieu, with an outstanding dance sequence, Ingmar Bergman's literally Death-defying, answers-to-reasons-for-human-misfortune-seeking masterpiece, Det sjunde inseglet ("The Seventh Seal") (1957), Billy Wilder's Seven Year Itch (1957), a clever and amusing first collaboration with incomparable Marilyn Monroe (a worm-up for their second, bigger if not decisive step in taboos-of-the-motion-picture-production-code-breaking, brilliant comedy Some Like It Hot (1959)), up to newer examples like David Fincher's disturbing drama Se7en (1995), one of the finest Hollywood movies of the 90's, as well as Tsui Hark's Chat Gim ("Seven Swords") (2005), a stunner in the department of action sequences from the often under-appreciated genre Wuxia, originating from Chinese literature.

However, even among such illustrious examples of movie-making par excellence, one movie holds a special place, Shichinin no samurai ("Seven Samurai") (1954) from the legendary Japanese director Akira Kurosawa. This movie doesn't seem to lack anything that an avid movie consumer, in particular samurai genre admirer, might be wishing for.

It is not easy to say anything new about the one of the most analyzed and scrutinized movies of the film history. Nevertheless, and despite being eventually only repeated, it shall be mentioned that movie has a simple but very engaging story - a group of peasants, representing a village, periodically stormed by gang of bandits, looting their crops and other possessions, hires several wandering ronins (masterless samurai) to help them protect the village - not without lucid observations on the possibility of social interaction between members of different classes during the almost seven centuries long feudal history (1185–1868) of Japan.

Characterization is excellent, and though having clear stand-outs in samurai's true leader, Kambei (Takashi Shimura), a wise tactician of the exceptional valor, as well as in the exuberantly uncontrollable Kikuchiyo (Toshiro Mifune), messy in its appearance and blustering in its manner, yet, a peasant descendant himself, making for a perfect link between the samurai and their employers, all other samurai are memorable, as well, sporting wide variety of personality traits. In joining the village protection campaign, hired for nothing more than a regular meal for as long as providing a service, thus primarily hoping to finally fill their starving stomachs, each one of them was driven by different additional motives, whether they were challenged to test their bravery, fighting skills and tactics, seeking for excitement and recognition, trying to regain pride and glory of the past days, just reaching out for that human touch (cross-class communication, even mere courtship promising relationship) they have been deprived of, or simply interested in its noble cause.

Together with true highlights in realistically choreographed battle scenes, showing all the pain and misery of excessive violence on the reverse of heroism, that even defenders cannot avoid resorting to, sadly announcing inevitable decline of the samurai and their ways exposed to new artless technology, unbecomingly dying ambushed by distant shots from the muskets, while ingloriously stuck in the village muds... it all makes for a compelling narrative.

Though triumphant in their common task to protect the village, unlikely alliance between samurai and peasants is ultimately doomed to fail. In the short run, it gives expected results, but in the long run, does not stand the chance. That is so loudly, although in fact silently, expressed at the end, when peasants don't even care to join the surviving samurai in their mourning over the fallen ones, not even giving the last well deserved respect to those who have helped them withstand fierce attacks, prevail and ultimately defeat bandits, and, in doing so, most of them given their lives. Peasants simply continue with their daily chores, while surviving samurai have to leave the village, like they have never existed, sadly symbolizing their ultimate destiny: slowly but surely stepping off the future pages of the history books.

Seven Samurai, the movie, is rightfully considered as the one that has redefined samurai film in its contemporary perception, and dawned almost two decades long string of successes, instantly becoming the brightest example of thus revived, uniquely provocative and entertaining sub-genre, unknown as such in the country of its origin, classified there within a broader genre, jidaigeki (a period drama, often describing events from pre-modern era of the Edo period, marking the governance of Tokugawa shogunate (1603-1868), relatively peaceful times for Japan's long history of civil wars, as opposed to gendaigeki, films treating contemporary matters), and by IMDb standards, as an action drama, occasionally historical, when based on real events.

Originating in the Edo-era Far East, it has inspired equally successful, star-studded (Y. Brynner, S. McQueen, C. Bronson, J. Coburn, E. Wallach, R. Vaughn, H. Buchholz, B. Dexter) Hollywood remake, The Magnificent Seven (1960), conveniently situated in the U.S. West of 19th century, as well as three lesser sequels, Return of... (1966), Guns of... (1969), and ...Ride! (1972).


100 of 103 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
best intermission Makarov-324
Did it take you long to really love this film? Naidox
No leg armor? Makarov-324
'We were born to suffer, it`s our fate'. Annoying. mistershankly
#15? dvl86
The Most Hated Movie among the IMDB Top 25 Movies hspraj
Discuss Seven Samurai (1954) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?