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Ran (1985)

R  |   |  Action, Drama, War  |  1 June 1985 (Japan)
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 71,793 users   Metascore: 90/100
Reviews: 230 user | 124 critic | 11 from Metacritic.com

An elderly lord abdicates to his three sons, and the two corrupt ones turn against him.



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Top Rated Movies #130 | Won 1 Oscar. Another 25 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Akira Terao ...
Jinpachi Nezu ...
Daisuke Ryû ...
Yoshiko Miyazaki ...
Hisashi Igawa ...
Pîtâ ...
Masayuki Yui ...
Kazuo Katô ...
Norio Matsui ...
Shumenosuke Ogura
Toshiya Ito ...
Mondo Naganuma
Kenji Kodama ...
Samon Shirane
Takashi Watanabe
Mansai Nomura ...
Tsurumaru (as Takeshi Nomura)


Japanese warlord Hidetori Ichimonji decides the time has come to retire and divide his fiefdom among his three sons. His eldest and middle sons - Taro and Jiro - agree with his decision and promise to support him for his remaining days. The youngest son Saburo disagrees with all of them arguing that there is little likelihood the three brothers will remain united. Insulted by his son's brashness, the warlord banishes Saburo. As the warlord begins his retirement, he quickly realizes that his two eldest sons selfish and have no intention of keeping their promises. It leads to war and only banished Saburo c an possibly save him. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

power | greed | blood | revenge | castle | See All (217) »


Action | Drama | War


R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

1 June 1985 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Ran  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$11,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,567 (USA) (30 June 2000)


$3,522,421 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints)| (70 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


A scene which required an entire field to be sprayed gold was filmed but left out of the final film during editing. See more »


During the battle at the third castle, there is a sequence where Hidetora emerges from the castle at the top of a flight of stairs and confronts enemy soldiers ascending the stairs. When he retreats, his bodyguards suddenly appear and retreat with him, even though they were not present moments earlier. See more »


Hidetora: The Great Lord goes nowhere alone.
Jiro: You renounced your power. You have no need of an escort.
Hidetora: Only the birds and the beasts live in solitude.
See more »


Version of King Lear (1987) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Best Film based on one of Shakespeare Best Works. This Masterpiece is recommended for anyone that loves movies . Truly one of the Greatest Films of all time!
19 August 2010 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Akira Kurosawa's 1985, Ran, is based one of Shakespeare's greatest works, King's Lear. The Film proudly stands along with his other classic such as Seven Samurai, Yojimbo, Roshomon, Sanjuro and the Hidden Fortress. He is a master in the art of filmmaking, no one can film an epic battle scene quite like Kurosawa. This is recognized as the most expensive film ever made by Akira Kurosawa, it was at that time, Japan's most expensive film ever. Being at the age of 75, he still showed us, he's one of the best in the business.

This movie is about an aging lord, head of the Ichimonji family, decides to retire and to pass the power to Taro, the eldest of his three sons. He will however have to banish Saburo, the youngest one, who dared to speak the truth to him. Soon, the former lord is chased away from the castles of his sons and becomes mad when he understands that one of his sons is trying to kill him. The three brothers are fighting for control of the Kingdom, as their lust for power grows every day. Four armies are facing each other on the prairie. Lord Ichimonji's former peaceful kingdom is nothing but a distant memory.

Akira Kurosawa redefines what an epic film is, with astonishing story telling, entirely believable characters and real life battle scenes without the use of Special effects/CGI. He retells the story of King Lear in his own way and no one would recognize that it was actually a adaptation beforehand. But just like Shakespeare, there is humor, irony, death and not a happy ending. Everyone who played a part in the production of this film, deserves some kind of recognition. The acting is pretty much excellent and certainly believable.

10/10 Kurosawa is a Genius

137 of 147 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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