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Gate of Hell (1953)

Jigokumon (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama, History, Romance | 10 December 1954 (USA)
A samurai pursues a married lady-in-waiting.

Director:

Teinosuke Kinugasa
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Won 1 Oscar. Another 6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kazuo Hasegawa ... Moritoo Endô
Machiko Kyô ... Kesa
Isao Yamagata ... Wataru Watanabe
Yatarô Kurokawa Yatarô Kurokawa ... Shigemori
Kôtarô Bandô Kôtarô Bandô ... Rokurô
Jun Tazaki Jun Tazaki ... Kogenta
Koreya Senda ... Gen Kiyomori
Masao Shimizu Masao Shimizu ... Nobuyori
Tatsuya Ishiguro ... Yachûta
Kenjirô Uemura ... Masanaka
Gen Shimizu Gen Shimizu ... Saburôsuke
Michiko Araki ... Mano
Yoshie Minami ... Tone
Kikue Môri ... Sawa
Ryôsuke Kagawa Ryôsuke Kagawa ... Yasutada
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Storyline

In 1160, in the Heian Period, Lord Kiyomori travels with his court to another feud and his Castle Sanjo is invaded by two other lords, in a coup. The loyal samurai Moritoh Enda asks the court lady Kesa to pose of the lord's sister to create a diversion while the lord's real sister and his father flee in the middle of the people. Then Moritoh travels to meet Lord Kiyomon and fights with him to defeat the enemies and the coup fails. Lord Kiyomon rewards the warriors that helped him and when he asks Moritoh what he wishes, he requests to marry Kesa. The lord grants his wish but soon he learns that Kesa is married with Wataru Watanabe, a samurai from the imperial guard. Moritoh harasses Kesa and threatens her, promising to kill her husband, her aunt and her if she does not marry him. Kesa's decision leads the trio to a tragic fate. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A Classic Drama of Passion See more »

Genres:

Drama | History | Romance

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

10 December 1954 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Gate of Hell See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Daiei Studios See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Recording)

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Visa de contrôle cinématographique France : #15760(subtitled version) or #15760/D (dubbed version). See more »

Quotes

Moritoo Endô: Brother, please don't be a traitor. This isn't you.
Moritada: I know what I'm doing. What good will it do for you to serve Kyomori?
Moritoo Endô: I don't know. Once you serve him though, he's your master forever. How can you betray him in his absence?
Moritada: It's not cowardice. It's shrewd stratagy. I'm sorry to tell you Kiyomori won't be coming back.
Moritoo Endô: How can a pack of mutts defeat the Taira Clan?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Janus Films' re-subtitled version, prepared for video releases, translates Kazuo Hasegawa's name as "Cazuo Hasegawa." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Operation Teahouse (1956) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Nice colors, slow story, great climax
15 August 2002 | by zetesSee all my reviews

A samurai falls in love with a woman whose life he saves. He is offered a reward for his bravery, and he asks if he can be married to that woman. Unfortunately, she is already married and the samurai's request cannot be fulfilled. He is steadfast in his desire, and tries forcibly to take her from her husband. The elements of many cheap thrillers exist in that scenario. Gate of Hell doesn't do too much to distinguish itself, although it's certainly not a thriller. Basically, the whole film is an excuse for its admittedly great climactic sequence, where the samurai invades the home of the woman and her husband at night. I really like how this sequence ends, but there are some questions left unanswered - annoyingly so. The husband even asks them aloud, and there really isn't a satisfactory explanation. Other than that sequence, most of the rest of the film is kind of tedious. Fortunately, the absolutely beautiful cinematography - was this Japan's first film in color? - always manages to be impressive. The costume design actually won an Academy Award, a much deserved one, if I may say so myself. It also won an honorary Oscar for Best Foreign Film, the year before that category was made official. Furthermore, it was the first Japanese film to win the Palme D'Or at Cannes. 7/10.


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