Japanese films

by MrKaya | created - 26 Jan 2015 | updated - 2 months ago | Public
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1. Sayonara itsuka (2010)

170 min | Drama, Romance

Higashigaito Yutaka is transferred to the Bangkok branch of Eastern Airlines. In three months, he will marry Michiko, a relative of the airline's founder, and though he doesn't love her, he... See full summary »

Director: John H. Lee | Stars: Miho Nakayama, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Yuriko Ishida, Chaiwat Ajwichai

Votes: 350

2. Danchizuma: Hirusagari no jôji (2010)

70 min | Drama

Sayaka is a housewife living in an apartment complex. Her husband Yuji is always busy with work and they rarely have communication, let alone sex. Sayaka is surrounded by various neighbors ... See full summary »

Director: Shun Nakahara | Stars: Sakiko Takao, Masaki Miura, Masashi Endô, Kiriko Shimizu

Votes: 110

3. After Life (1998)

R | 118 min | Drama, Fantasy

91 Metascore

After death, people have just one week to choose only a memory to keep for eternity.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda | Stars: Arata Iura, Erika Oda, Susumu Terajima, Takashi Naitô

Votes: 8,406 | Gross: $0.80M

4. Departures (2008)

PG-13 | 130 min | Drama, Music

68 Metascore

A newly unemployed cellist takes a job preparing the dead for funerals.

Director: Yôjirô Takita | Stars: Masahiro Motoki, Ryôko Hirosue, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Kazuko Yoshiyuki

Votes: 43,635 | Gross: $1.54M

5. Tokyo Sonata (2008)

PG-13 | 120 min | Drama

80 Metascore

An ordinary Japanese family slowly disintegrates after its patriarch loses his job at a prominent company.

Director: Kiyoshi Kurosawa | Stars: Teruyuki Kagawa, Kyôko Koizumi, Yû Koyanagi, Kai Inowaki

Votes: 7,901 | Gross: $0.28M

6. Kikujiro (1999)

PG-13 | 122 min | Drama, Comedy

44 Metascore

A young, naive boy sets out alone on the road to find his wayward mother. Soon he finds an unlikely protector in a crotchety man and the two have a series of unexpected adventures along the way.

Director: Takeshi Kitano | Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Yusuke Sekiguchi, Kayoko Kishimoto, The Great Gidayû

Votes: 16,522 | Gross: $0.20M

7. Brother (I) (2000)

R | 114 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

47 Metascore

A Japanese gangster is exiled to Los Angeles where his brother lives with a small but respectable multi-racial gang, who he inspires to expand their influence.

Director: Takeshi Kitano | Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Claude Maki, Omar Epps, Masaya Katô

Votes: 20,257 | Gross: $0.45M

8. Ghost in the Shell (1995)

Not Rated | 83 min | Animation, Action, Crime

76 Metascore

A cyborg policewoman and her partner hunt a mysterious and powerful hacker called the Puppet Master.

Director: Mamoru Oshii | Stars: Atsuko Tanaka, Iemasa Kayumi, Akio Ôtsuka, Kôichi Yamadera

Votes: 111,016 | Gross: $0.52M

9. Dark Water (2002)

PG-13 | 101 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

A mother and her 6 year old daughter move into a creepy apartment whose every surface is permeated by water.

Director: Hideo Nakata | Stars: Hitomi Kuroki, Rio Kanno, Mirei Oguchi, Asami Mizukawa

Votes: 27,215

10. Seven Samurai (1954)

Not Rated | 207 min | Adventure, Drama

98 Metascore

A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Keiko Tsushima, Yukiko Shimazaki

Votes: 273,034 | Gross: $0.27M

11. Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984)

PG | 117 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy

86 Metascore

Warrior and pacifist Princess Nausicaä desperately struggles to prevent two warring nations from destroying themselves and their dying planet.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Sumi Shimamoto, Mahito Tsujimura, Hisako Kyôda, Gorô Naya

Votes: 123,120

12. Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)

G | 103 min | Animation, Adventure, Drama

83 Metascore

A young witch, on her mandatory year of independent life, finds fitting into a new community difficult while she supports herself by running an air courier service.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Kirsten Dunst, Minami Takayama, Rei Sakuma, Kappei Yamaguchi

Votes: 94,849

13. Howl's Moving Castle (2004)

PG | 119 min | Animation, Adventure, Family

80 Metascore

When an unconfident young woman is cursed with an old body by a spiteful witch, her only chance of breaking the spell lies with a self-indulgent yet insecure young wizard and his companions in his legged, walking castle.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Chieko Baishô, Takuya Kimura, Tatsuya Gashûin, Akihiro Miwa

Votes: 270,448 | Gross: $4.71M

14. Castle in the Sky (1986)

PG | 125 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy

78 Metascore

A young boy and a girl with a magic crystal must race against pirates and foreign agents in a search for a legendary floating castle.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Anna Paquin, James Van Der Beek, Cloris Leachman, Mark Hamill

Votes: 122,134

15. Spirited Away (2001)

PG | 125 min | Animation, Adventure, Family

96 Metascore

During her family's move to the suburbs, a sullen 10-year-old girl wanders into a world ruled by gods, witches, and spirits, and where humans are changed into beasts.

Directors: Hayao Miyazaki, Kirk Wise | Stars: Daveigh Chase, Suzanne Pleshette, Miyu Irino, Rumi Hiiragi

Votes: 530,885 | Gross: $10.06M

16. Princess Mononoke (1997)

PG-13 | 134 min | Animation, Adventure, Fantasy

76 Metascore

On a journey to find the cure for a Tatarigami's curse, Ashitaka finds himself in the middle of a war between the forest gods and Tatara, a mining colony. In this quest he also meets San, the Mononoke Hime.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Yôji Matsuda, Yuriko Ishida, Yûko Tanaka, Billy Crudup

Votes: 281,410 | Gross: $2.38M

17. My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

G | 86 min | Animation, Family, Fantasy

86 Metascore

When two girls move to the country to be near their ailing mother, they have adventures with the wondrous forest spirits who live nearby.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Hitoshi Takagi, Noriko Hidaka, Chika Sakamoto, Shigesato Itoi

Votes: 226,934

18. Yojimbo (1961)

Not Rated | 110 min | Action, Drama, Thriller

A crafty ronin comes to a town divided by two criminal gangs and decides to play them against each other to free the town.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Eijirô Tôno, Tatsuya Nakadai, Yôko Tsukasa

Votes: 92,777

19. High and Low (1963)

Not Rated | 143 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

An executive of a shoe company becomes a victim of extortion when his chauffeur's son is kidnapped and held for ransom.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Yutaka Sada, Tatsuya Nakadai, Kyôko Kagawa

Votes: 22,741

20. Kaze tachinu (2013)

PG-13 | 126 min | Animation, Biography, Drama

83 Metascore

A look at the life of Jiro Horikoshi, the man who designed Japanese fighter planes during World War II.

Director: Hayao Miyazaki | Stars: Hideaki Anno, Hidetoshi Nishijima, Miori Takimoto, Masahiko Nishimura

Votes: 58,137 | Gross: $5.21M

21. Rashômon (1950)

Not Rated | 88 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

The rape of a bride and the murder of her samurai husband are recalled from the perspectives of a bandit, the bride, the samurai's ghost and a woodcutter.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Machiko Kyô, Masayuki Mori, Takashi Shimura

Votes: 128,264 | Gross: $0.10M

22. Ran (1985)

R | 162 min | Action, Drama

96 Metascore

In Medieval Japan, an elderly warlord retires, handing over his empire to his three sons. However, he vastly underestimates how the new-found power will corrupt them and cause them to turn on each other...and him.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Terao, Jinpachi Nezu, Daisuke Ryû

Votes: 95,890 | Gross: $3.52M

23. Ikiru (1952)

Not Rated | 143 min | Drama

A bureaucrat tries to find a meaning in his life after he discovers he has terminal cancer.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Takashi Shimura, Nobuo Kaneko, Shin'ichi Himori, Haruo Tanaka

Votes: 55,889 | Gross: $0.06M

24. Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Not Rated | 89 min | Animation, Drama, War

A young boy and his little sister struggle to survive in Japan during World War II.

Director: Isao Takahata | Stars: Tsutomu Tatsumi, Ayano Shiraishi, Akemi Yamaguchi, Yoshiko Shinohara

Votes: 185,203

25. Throne of Blood (1957)

Not Rated | 110 min | Drama

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.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Minoru Chiaki, Isuzu Yamada, Takashi Shimura

Votes: 38,531

26. Akira (1988)

R | 124 min | Animation, Action, Drama

A secret military project endangers Neo-Tokyo when it turns a biker gang member into a rampaging psychic psychopath that only two teenagers and a group of psychics can stop.

Director: Katsuhiro Ôtomo | Stars: Mitsuo Iwata, Nozomu Sasaki, Mami Koyama, Tesshô Genda

Votes: 132,240 | Gross: $0.55M

27. Harakiri (1962)

Not Rated | 133 min | Action, Drama, History

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.

Director: Masaki Kobayashi | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Ishihama, Shima Iwashita, Tetsurô Tanba

Votes: 23,347

28. Tokyo Story (1953)

Not Rated | 136 min | Drama

An old couple visit their children and grandchildren in the city; but the children have little time for them.

Director: Yasujirô Ozu | Stars: Chishû Ryû, Chieko Higashiyama, Sô Yamamura, Setsuko Hara

Votes: 41,067

29. Like Father, Like Son (2013)

Not Rated | 121 min | Drama

73 Metascore

Ryota is a successful workaholic businessman. When he learns that his biological son was switched with another boy after birth, he faces the difficult decision to choose his true son or the boy he and his wife have raised as their own.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda | Stars: Masaharu Fukuyama, Machiko Ono, Yôko Maki, Lily Franky

Votes: 16,735 | Gross: $0.28M

30. Autoreiji (2010)

R | 109 min | Action, Crime, Drama

67 Metascore

The boss of a major crime syndicate orders his lieutenant to bring a rogue gang of drug traffickers in line, a job that gets passed on to his long-suffering subordinate.

Director: Takeshi Kitano | Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Kippei Shîna, Ryo Kase, Fumiyo Kohinata

Votes: 10,765

31. Like Someone in Love (2012)

Not Rated | 109 min | Drama

76 Metascore

In Tokyo, a young sex worker develops an unexpected connection with a widower over a period of two days.

Director: Abbas Kiarostami | Stars: Rin Takanashi, Tadashi Okuno, Ryo Kase, Denden

Votes: 8,794 | Gross: $0.22M

32. Shall We Dance? (1996)

PG | 136 min | Comedy, Drama, Music

68 Metascore

A successful but unhappy Japanese accountant finds the missing passion in his life when he begins to secretly take ballroom dance lessons.

Director: Masayuki Suo | Stars: Kôji Yakusho, Tamiyo Kusakari, Naoto Takenaka, Eri Watanabe

Votes: 9,893 | Gross: $9.68M

33. Nihon Gankutsuou (1979– )

740 min | Adventure, History

Inspired by the famous Novel "The Count of Monte Cristo" by Alexandre Dumas Pére, a Samurai seeks revenge on his traitors in Japan of the 17th century.

Stars: Hiroshi Arikawa, Yoichi Hayashi, Masao Kusakari, Norihei Miki

Votes: 12

34. Nobody Knows (2004)

PG-13 | 141 min | Drama

88 Metascore

In a small Tokyo apartment, twelve-year-old Akira must care for his younger siblings after their mother leaves them and shows no sign of returning.

Director: Hirokazu Koreeda | Stars: Yûya Yagira, Ayu Kitaura, Hiei Kimura, Momoko Shimizu

Votes: 20,378 | Gross: $0.68M

35. Tasogare Seibei (2002)

129 min | Drama, History

82 Metascore

As the feudal Japan era draws to a close, a widower samurai experiences difficulty balancing 2 young daughters, an aged mother, clan loyalties, and the sudden reappearance of his childhood sweetheart.

Director: Yôji Yamada | Stars: Hiroyuki Sanada, Rie Miyazawa, Nenji Kobayashi, Ren Osugi

Votes: 20,123

36. The Hidden Fortress (1958)

Not Rated | 126 min | Adventure, Drama

Lured by gold, two greedy peasants escort a man and woman across enemy lines. However, they do not realize that their companions are actually a princess and her general.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Misa Uehara, Minoru Chiaki, Kamatari Fujiwara

Votes: 28,734

37. Dodes'ka-den (1970)

Not Rated | 140 min | Drama

Various tales in the lives of Tokyo slum dwellers, including a mentally deficient young man obsessed with driving his own commuter trolley.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Yoshitaka Zushi, Kin Sugai, Toshiyuki Tonomura, Shinsuke Minami

Votes: 5,251

38. Kagemusha (1980)

PG | 162 min | Drama, History, War

A petty thief with an utter resemblance to a samurai warlord is hired as the lord's double. When the warlord later dies the thief is forced to take up arms in his place.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Tatsuya Nakadai, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Ken'ichi Hagiwara, Jinpachi Nezu

Votes: 27,782

39. Red Beard (1965)

Not Rated | 185 min | Drama

In 19th century Japan, a rough tempered yet charitable town doctor trains a young intern.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Yûzô Kayama, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Reiko Dan

Votes: 13,825

40. Maadadayo (1993)

134 min | Drama

76 Metascore

Following World War II, a retired professor approaching his autumn years finds his quality of life drastically reduced in war-torn Tokyo. Denying despair, he pursues writing and celebrates his birthday with his adoring students.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Tatsuo Matsumura, Hisashi Igawa, George Tokoro, Masayuki Yui

Votes: 4,341 | Gross: $0.05M

41. Sanjuro (1962)

Not Rated | 96 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A crafty samurai helps a young man and his fellow clansmen save his uncle, who has been framed and imprisoned by a corrupt superintendent.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Toshirô Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Keiju Kobayashi, Yûnosuke Itô

Votes: 25,747

42. Sansho the Bailiff (1954)

Not Rated | 124 min | Drama

In medieval Japan, a compassionate governor is sent into exile. His wife and children try to join him, but are separated, and the children grow up amid suffering and oppression.

Director: Kenji Mizoguchi | Stars: Kinuyo Tanaka, Yoshiaki Hanayagi, Kyôko Kagawa, Eitarô Shindô

Votes: 12,083

43. Dreams (1990)

PG | 119 min | Drama, Fantasy

A collection of tales based upon the actual dreams of director Akira Kurosawa.

Directors: Akira Kurosawa, Ishirô Honda | Stars: Akira Terao, Mitsuko Baishô, Toshie Negishi, Mieko Harada

Votes: 20,957 | Gross: $1.96M

44. The House of Small Cubes (2008)

12 min | Animation, Short, Drama

To save his house from rising flood waters, an old man uses bricks to build it higher, then he relives events from his past while searching for his dropped pipe.

Director: Kunio Kato | Star: Masami Nagasawa

Votes: 9,290

45. In the Realm of the Senses (1976)

NC-17 | 109 min | Biography, Drama, Horror

A passionate telling of the story of Sada Abe, a woman whose affair with her master led to a sexual obsession which then came to a violent end.

Director: Nagisa Ôshima | Stars: Tatsuya Fuji, Eiko Matsuda, Aoi Nakajima, Yasuko Matsui

Votes: 15,822

46. Fireworks (1997)

103 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Nishi leaves the police in the face of harrowing personal and professional difficulties. Spiraling into depression, he makes questionable decisions.

Director: Takeshi Kitano | Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Kayoko Kishimoto, Ren Osugi, Susumu Terajima

Votes: 24,156 | Gross: $0.23M

47. Koroshiya 1 (2001)

R | 129 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

55 Metascore

As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of.

Director: Takashi Miike | Stars: Tadanobu Asano, Nao Ohmori, Shin'ya Tsukamoto, Paulyn Sun

Votes: 47,518 | Gross: $0.02M

48. Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles (2005)

PG | 107 min | Drama

73 Metascore

A Japanese father travels to China's Yunnan province in the place of his ailing son to film a famous folk-opera star.

Director: Yimou Zhang | Stars: Ken Takakura, Kiichi Nakai, Shinobu Terajima, Ken Nakamoto

Votes: 4,583 | Gross: $0.25M

49. Drunken Angel (1948)

Not Rated | 102 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

A drunken doctor with a hot temper and a violence-prone gangster with tuberculosis form a quicksilver bond.

Director: Akira Kurosawa | Stars: Takashi Shimura, Toshirô Mifune, Reizaburô Yamamoto, Michiyo Kogure

Votes: 8,308

50. Miyamoto Musashi (1954)

Not Rate