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The Barbarian and the Geisha (1958)

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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Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Okichi
...
...
Governor Tamura (as So Yamamura)
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Storyline

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 <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

JOHN HUSTON'S UNPARALLELED ADVENTURE AND LOVE STORY! (original print ad - all caps) See more »


Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »
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Details

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Language:

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Release Date:

30 September 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Barbarian  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Westrex Recording System)

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The working title for this film was "The Townsend Harris Story". There is an article about Charles G. Clarke filming the movie in Japan in "American Cinematographer" Jan., 1958. "Hollywood's Globetrotting Cameraman" by Clifford Harrington. See more »

Goofs

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 »

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User Reviews

Surprising social sensitivity so soon after a horrific war.
20 January 2002 | by (Toronto, Canada) – See all my reviews



When you consider that this movie was made only 13 years after the end of the war in the Pacific, with its brutality and carnage, it is quite surprising to see that the "The Barbarian and the Geisha" tries to to present the clash of cultures, 100 years earlier, with such apparent equity and fairness.

While some may see John Wayne as the archetypical posterboy for American jingoism, in fact his character clearly tries to understand the country in which he is trying to establish the consulate, and shows genuine remorse, not arrogance, in noting that in early part of his assignment, all that the Americans had established was a cholera epidemic and the torching of the city to quell it.

While the interracial love story behind the title was somewhat superficial, I thought that the more important aspects of colliding cultures and political shadowboxing was quite interesting and well presented.


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