Townsend Harris is sent by President Pierce to Japan to serve as the first U.S. Consul-General to that country. Harris discovers enormous hostility to foreigners, as well as the love of a ... See full summary »
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Townsend Harris is sent by President Pierce to Japan to serve as the first U.S. Consul-General to that country. Harris discovers enormous hostility to foreigners, as well as the love of a young geisha. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Based on the true story of American diplomat Townsend Harris, his time in Japan in the 1850s and 60s, and his romance with a 17-year-old geisha named Kichi. Their story is one of the most well-known folk tales in Japan. The real Harris died in New York in 1878, and the real Kichi committed suicide in Shimoda in 1892. See more »
At one point, Townsend calls to his Chinese servant Sam; this was not, as some thought, a mistaken reference to an actor's real name. See more »
An interesting look at Japan prior to opening to the West. John Wayne as America's first consul to Japan arrives in accordance with agreements resulting from Perry's gunboat diplomacy. He is not welcome. Wayne eventually wins his meeting with the Shogun after bring a cholera epidemic, introduced by an American ship, under control. There follows a colorful procession to the capital bearing gifts for the Shogun, including a bottle of Old Tanglefoot. The meeting with the Shogun, the debates among the Japanese nobles and an assassination during an archery exhibit present an interesting look at the politics of the period. Altogether a rather enjoyable movie and besides how often do you get to see the Duke lose a fight to a guy half his size.
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