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Samurai II: Duel at Ichijoji Temple (1955)

Zoku Miyamoto Musashi: Ichijôji no kettô (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Adventure, Biography | 20 October 1967 (USA)
Musashi Miyamoto returns to Kyoto after years of absence. After a series of fights against the Yoshioka School, he challenges its master to a duel.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Musashi Miyamoto (Takezo)
Kôji Tsuruta ...
Kojiro Sasaki
Mariko Okada ...
Akemi
Kaoru Yachigusa ...
Otsu
...
Dayu Yoshino
...
Oko, Akemi's mother
...
Seijuro Yoshioka
Daisuke Katô ...
Toji Gion
Kurôemon Onoe ...
Priest Takuan
Sachio Sakai ...
Matahachi Honiden
Yû Fujiki ...
Denshichiro Yoshioka
Machiko Kitagawa ...
Kogure
Eiko Miyoshi ...
Osugi, Matahachi's mother
...
Baiken Shishido
Kenjin Iida ...
Jotaro
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Storyline

After years on the road establishing his reputation as Japan's greatest Samurai, Takezo returns to Kyoto. Otsu waits for him, yet he has come not for her but to challenge the leader of the region's finest school for Kendo. To prove his valor and skill, he walks deliberately into ambushes set up by the school's followers. While Otsu waits, Akemi also seeks him, expressing her desires directly. Meanwhile, Takezo is observed by Sasaki Kojiro, a brilliant young fighter, confident he can dethrone Takezo. After leaving Kyoto in triumph, Takezo declares his love for Otsu, but in a way that dishonors her and shames him. Once again, he leaves alone. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

20 October 1967 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Duel at Ichijoji Temple  »

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Technical Specs

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Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Goofs

The levels of water and the mud in the rice paddies at Ichijoji Temple vary between shots. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Classic Jidai Geki
9 December 2002 | by See all my reviews

The tale of Myamoto Musashi - thief, lover, rogue, then warrior, hero and master - is enshrined in Japanese culture, perfect showcase material as it were. It has been adapted more than once to the screen, and Inagaki's classy, colorful version is perhaps the best known. It is everything you'd expect from a period samurai film if you've never seen one and harbor no negative preconceptions.

After a playful first part that has a classic hero's journey structure, part II takes things to the next level without having to rush to the finish, and is the more interesting film. It allows the hero to wield his newfound power without the restraint and inner peace he will later find. It allows him the get mad, and nobody does unleashed fury like Toshiro Mifune, not when you throw 80+ armed fools in this way.

I chose to review this one because it is a good sample of the very best this trilogy accomplishes: compelling archetypical characters, lush cinematography and that "oriental" elegance that always seduces non-Japanese audiences, drawn in as they are by the very universal plot and character dynamics.

I cannot put it in the same leagues as the masterpieces of Kurosawa, Ozu and Kobayashi, but if it is to be a gateway film experience, then it is a bloody good one, and laudable for what it accomplishes.

You might really enjoy this, and if you do, it's just the beginning!


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