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Throne of Blood (1957)
"Kumonosu-jô" (original title)

Unrated  |   |  Action, Drama  |  22 November 1961 (USA)
8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 26,601 users  
Reviews: 109 user | 114 critic

A war-hardened general, egged on by his ambitious wife, works to fulfill a prophecy that he would become lord of Spider's Web Castle.

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(screenplay), (screenplay), 3 more credits »
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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Isuzu Yamada ...
...
Akira Kubo ...
Hiroshi Tachikawa ...
Kunimaru Tsuzuki (as Yôichi Tachikawa)
Minoru Chiaki ...
Takamaru Sasaki ...
Kuniharu Tsuzuki
Gen Shimizu
Kokuten Kôdô ...
Military Commander (as Kuninori Kôdô)
Kichijirô Ueda ...
Washizu's workman
Eiko Miyoshi ...
Old Woman at castle
Chieko Naniwa ...
Nakajirô Tomita ...
Second Military Commander
Yû Fujiki ...
Washizu samurai
Sachio Sakai ...
Washizu samurai
Edit

Storyline

After securing a major victory on the battlefield, Taketoti Washizu and one of his commanders, Yoshiaki Miki, find themselves lost in the maze-like Spider's Web forest. They come across a spirit-like seer who tells them of their future: both have been promoted because of their victory that day; Washizu will someday be the Great Lord of the Spider's Web castle while Miki's son will someday rule as Great Lord as well. When they arrive at the castle, they learn that the first part of the prophecy is correct. Washizu has no desire to become Great Lord but his ambitious wife urges him to reconsider. When the current Great Lord makes a surprise visit to his garrison outpost, Washizu is again promoted to commander of his vanguard but his wife reminds him of the danger that comes with the position. As pressure mounts, Wahizu takes action leading to its inevitable conclusion. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Drama

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

22 November 1961 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Throne of Blood  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Recording)| (Perspecta Sound encoding)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Takeshi Katô (Guard killed by Washizu) was worried about the thrust of Toshirô Mifune's sword, so he placed a block of wood in his arm pit. Unfortunately Mifune's thrust split the block and wounded Katô. He bore the scar until his death in 2015. See more »

Goofs

After Macbeth and Banquo come to the forest clearing where the spirit dwells, as they get down from their horses, all of Macbeth's arrows fall out of his quiver. In the next shot however, the quiver is full of arrows again. See more »

Quotes

Lady Asaji Washizu: Admirable, my Lord. You, who would soon rule the world, allow a ghost to frighten you.
See more »

Connections

Version of Macbeth (1916) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Kurosawa's masterful retelling of Shakespeare's Macbeth
26 December 1998 | by (Los Angeles) – See all my reviews

Akira Kurosawa would end up using Shakespearean influence on two of his films. Throne of Blood is Kurosawa's adaptation of Shakespeare's play, Macbeth, but in a feudal Japanese setting.

The film begins with Taketoki Washizu (Toshiro Mifune) and Yoshaki Miki (Minoru Chiaki) winning a fierce battle for their lord. Afterwards, they are invited to the lord's castle. On their way there, they come across a spirit in the forest. the spirit tells Washizu that he will soon become in command of a castle but that he will not rule long, and Yoshaki's son will soon takeover. Washizu is soon convinced that these predictions will come true, and becomes consumed with greed and evil in order to make sure that they do indeed come true.

In this film Kurosawa uses a more still and quiet filming style than was used in his previous films (with the exception of Ikiru). A style that he continued to use for the rest of his career. The Shakespearean influence is obviously there, not only in story, but the film itself has a very theatre-esque feeling to it.


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