9 user 4 critic

Japan's Longest Day (1967)

Nihon no ichiban nagai hi (original title)
Following the detonation of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese military and the government clash over the demand from the Allies for unconditional surrender. Minister ... See full summary »


Kihachi Okamoto


Shinobu Hashimoto (screenplay), Soichi Oya (book)
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Seiji Miyaguchi ... Foreign Minister Shigenori Togo
Rokkô Toura Rokkô Toura ... Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs Shunichi Matsumoto
Chishû Ryû ... Prime Minister Baron Kantaro Suzuki
Sô Yamamura ... Navy Minister Admiral Mitsumasa Yonai
Toshirô Mifune ... War Minister General Korechika Anami
Yoshio Kosugi Yoshio Kosugi ... Minister of Public Welfare Keisuke Okada
Takashi Shimura ... Information Bureau Director Hiroshi Shimomura
Etsushi Takahashi Etsushi Takahashi ... Lt. Colonel Masutaka Ida - Military Affairs Section
Takao Inoue Takao Inoue ... Lt. Colonel Masahiko Takeshita - Military Affairs Section
Tadao Nakamaru Tadao Nakamaru ... Lt. Colonel Jiro Shiizaki - Military Affairs Section
Toshio Kurosawa Toshio Kurosawa ... Major Kenji Hatanaka - Military Affairs Section
Akira Kitchôji Akira Kitchôji ... General Yoshijiro Umezu - Chief of the Army General Staff
Haruo Yamada Haruo Yamada ... Admiral Soemu Toyoda - Chief of the Naval General Staff
Ryôsuke Kagawa ... Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Tadaatsu Ishiguro
Ushio Akashi Ushio Akashi ... President of the Privy Council Baron Kiichiro Hiranuma


Following the detonation of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese military and the government clash over the demand from the Allies for unconditional surrender. Minister of the Army Anami leads the military officers who propose to fight on, even to the death of every Japanese citizen. Emperor Hirohito, however, joins with his ministers in asking the unthinkable, the peaceful surrender of Japan. When the military plots a coup to overthrow the Emperor's civilian government, Anami must face the choice between his desires and loyalty to his Emperor. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | History | War


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This film was produced to commemorate the 35th anniversary of Toho Studios. See more »

User Reviews

Gripping depiction of obscure WWII history
12 March 2007 | by zetesSee all my reviews

I had thought the title of this one was an American invention to capitalize off of the American film The Longest Day, but I do believe "Japan's Longest Day" is the actual title. It has nothing to do with the other film. It, in fact, depicts perhaps the most tense day in modern Japanese history, the 24 hours between August 14th and 15th, 1945. The simplified version of WWII history has the Japanese quickly surrendering with their tales between their legs after the Allies dropped the bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but a nation so wound up in nationalistic and militaristic pride wasn't ready to give up that easily. The film doesn't depict the citizenry – one could imagine they would be mostly sick of war. But the military certainly was ready to go all the way, to have every person in Japan martyred. Emperor Hirohito, who is supposed to be looked upon as divine by his people, decided that his empire must surrender. Many of the heads of military only agree grudgingly. Many of their underlings rebel. Hirohito makes a recording of his surrender message, to be played at noon on the 15th. A group of soldiers tries to rally others not to listen, and they attempt a coup and try to steal the record. The film is long – 2 hours and 37 minutes. We are given the names of every single character in the film – I would venture to guess that over 100 names are thrown at us over the film, right up until the end. It's difficult to follow, but I don't believe it's necessary to understand every nuance of what was happening. The previous year, Kihachi Okamoto made what is probably his best (and best-known) film, Sword of Doom. Why choose him for this project? Well, there is at least one scene where that is pretty much answered (just remember that the Japanese soldiers still had samurai swords). Really, though, I don't think the direction is that impressive. As a film, it's nothing fantastic. But for the depiction of the minutiae of history, it's well worth watching. Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura and Chishu Ryu all have large roles, but I honestly didn't even recognize them. They fade into these historical characters perfectly.

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Release Date:

26 March 1968 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Japan's Longest Day See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Toho Company See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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