The mother of a feudal lord's only heir is kidnapped away from her husband by the lord. The husband and his samurai father must decide whether to accept the unjust decision, or risk death to get her back.
An elder ronin samurai arrives at a feudal lord's home and requests an honorable place to commit suicide. But when the ronin inquires about a younger samurai who arrived before him things take an unexpected turn.
February 17 to March 3, 1860, inside Edo castle. A group of assassins wait by Sakurada Gate to kill the lord of the House of Ii, a powerful man in the Tokugawa government, which has ruled ... See full summary »
During peace in 1725, aging swordsman Isaburo is living a henpecked life when his clan lord requests that Isaburo's son marry the lord's mistress, with whom he's displeased, even though she's born him a son. Isaburo wants to refuse, but his son Yogoro accepts the woman, Ichi, and they fall deeply in love. Their love renews Isaburo, so when the clan lord's elder son dies and the lord sends for Ichi to return to his side as mother of his heir, Isaburo opposes his lord. Yogoro and Ichi, who now have a baby daughter, stand with him. The clan orders their suicide, then sends soldiers to kill them. Isaburo's only hope is to take his case to Edo to expose the clan's cruelty. Can he? Written by
At 1:13:16 into the Criterion Collection DVD version, when the shot changes to Yogoro (played by Gô Katô)---just as he begins to verbally caution the lord and his retainers (after having delivered the petition)---there is a boom mic bobbing up and down about 10 inches above Gô's head, just on the edge of the frame. Then, in the same shot, as Gô is rising to his feet, the mic can be seen in front of his forehead. The mic then casts a shadow on his forehead just before the shot changes to a closeup of his face. See more »
Toshiro Mifune, trapped in a loveless marriage and bored with his position within his clan, would just like to enjoy his grandchild and see his sons have a happier life than he. But the same forces that conspired to trap him in his situation--duty to family and obligations to the clan and feudal chain of command--now threaten his son, daughter-in-law and granddaugher. Under great pressure, he resists the persuasion of his wife's family and his clan to bow to "duty". The tension builds--perhaps at one point a little too drawn out-- to an exciting climax.
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