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Kagemusha (1980)

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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.

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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 20 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Shingen Takeda / Kagemusha
... Nobukado Takeda
Ken'ichi Hagiwara ... Katsuyori Takeda
... Sohachiro Tsuchiya
Hideji Ôtaki ... Masakage Yamagata
Daisuke Ryû ... Nobunaga Oda
Masayuki Yui ... Ieyasu Tokugawa
... Otsuyanokata
Mitsuko Baishô ... Oyunokata
Hideo Murota ... Nobufusa Baba
Takayuki Shiho ... Masatoyo Naito
Kôji Shimizu ... Katsusuke Atobe
Noboru Shimizu ... Masatane Hara
Sen Yamamoto ... Nobushige Oyamada
Shuhei Sugimori ... Masanobu Kosaka
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Storyline

When a powerful warlord in medieval Japan dies, a poor thief recruited to impersonate him finds difficulty living up to his role and clashes with the spirit of the warlord during turbulent times in the kingdom. Written by Keith Loh <loh@sfu.ca>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | History | War

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

Release Date:

10 October 1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Kagemusha  »

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Box Office

Budget:

$6,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (International Cut)

Sound Mix:

| (Japan theatrical release)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

George Lucas assisted Akira Kurosawa with this film in a number of capacities. Lucas' big-budget box-office success Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977) had been inspired by a number of Kurosawa's early films. These were Sanjuro (Sanjuro (1962)), Yojimbo (Yojimbo (1961)) and The Hidden Fortress (The Hidden Fortress (1958)). See more »

Goofs

In the final battle there are at least 100 riflemen shown firing their matchlock rifles in volleys. The smoke generated by the matchlocks almost immediately dissipates. This indicates a more modern gunpowder was used in the matchlocks as the historically correct black powder load would blanket the battlefield with thick smoke after a handful of volleys. See more »

Quotes

Kagemusha: A serious illness can change even a man's heart.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Long, But Fantastic, Film.
27 April 2009 | by See all my reviews

Akira Kurosawa's "Kagemusha" (1980) is one of those tremendously long films that somehow never drags. The plot is about a petty thief who is about to be crucified but is saved by a Japanese warlord called Lord Shingen because of his amazing resemblance to him and is used as a double. When the Lord is killed, and because of a plan laid by Shingen before he died, the so-call "Shadow Warrior" must impersonate the Lord for three years. Aided by this clever plot, Kurosawa shows us Japanese court ritual, with help by a brilliant performance by Tatsuya Nakadai, gives a fascinating picture of fifteenth century Japan. This a fabulous movie, with a particularly moving ending, that shows just how great Akira Kurosawa is.


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