The Hidden Fortress (1958) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • 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.

  • The story follows two greedy peasants in feudal Japan, Tahei and Matashichi, who are returning home from a failed attempt to profit from a war between neighboring clans. En Route they encounter the remnants of the defeated tribe that consists, most notably, of a famous General and a Princess who are hiding out in a fortress in the mountains. General Rokurota Makabe and Princess Yuki need to escape into allied territory with their large supply of gold so that they can rebuild their shattered clan. To do this the Peasants are tricked into helping them, with the promise that they will receive a large share of the gold when the destination is reached. Along the way, the General's prowess is put to the test as he must guide the 4, and later 5 with the inclusion of a freed slave, through close encounters with the pursuing enemy, and out of difficult situations the bumbling peasants manage to get them into.

  • In the middle of a war, two peasants trying to escape the fighting stumble across a man who persuades them to help him move his gold to a safer area. He turns out to be Rokurota Makabea, a famous general in the army of Akizuki, the invaded country. The two peasants scheme to enrich themselves at the General's expense, but he foils their every attempt. However, he is also transporting someone more precious than gold - Princess Yuki, the heir to the Akizuki throne. There is a bounty on her head and the journey will be a perilous one.

  • Princess Yuki Akizuki ("Yukihime" in Japanese) is to be led through enemy territory, where she may rebuild her kingdom with gold that she has in her caravan. She is assisted by her trusted general, Rokurota Makabe, who insists that she masquarades as a mute farmer. Two minions, Tahei and Matashichi help unknowingly, as they believe they will get a piece of the gold if they help the princess attain her goals.

  • In the Sixteenth Century, in Japan, Tahei (Minoru Chiaki) and Matakishi (Kamatari Fujiwara), two rascals and greedy peasants, are trying to return to the city of Akizuki through Hayakawa, after an unsuccessful attempt of making money with the war between the clans of Yamana and Akizuki. While warming themselves in a fire, they find gold with the symbol MT. Suribachi of the Akizuki hidden in the firewood, and they decide to search for other branches. Tahei and Matakishi meet General Rokurota Makabe (Toshirô Mifune), who is secretly protecting Princess Yukihime (Misa Uehara), and without knowing their identities, they accept to escort and help them in the transportation of the gold through the enemy lines to Akizuki.

  • Two peasant farmers are refugees, trying to return home after a war. They find gold, and join with a mysterious powerful-looking man and a mysterious beautiful girl. Together they attempt to smuggle the gold across the border and evade capture.

  • During Japan's feudal wars, two cowardly farmers stumble upon an attempt by a defeated army general to get the last member of his ruling house - a wilful young princess - to safety in friendly territory.


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