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Sword of the Beast (1965)

Kedamono no ken (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Drama | 18 September 1965 (Japan)
After killing a counselor of his clan, a fugitive samurai befriends a couple poaching the shogun's gold in the mountains.

Director:

Hideo Gosha
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Cast

Credited cast:
Mikijirô Hira ... Yuuki Gennosuke
Gô Katô Gô Katô ... Jurata Yamane
Shima Iwashita ... Taka
Toshie Kimura ... Misa
Kantarô Suga Kantarô Suga ... Daizaburo
Yôko Mihara Yôko Mihara ... Osen
Kunie Tanaka ... Tanji
Eijirô Tôno ... Minister
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Shigeru Amachi
Hajime Araki Hajime Araki
Tsuyoshi Date Tsuyoshi Date
Ryûji Fujisawa Ryûji Fujisawa
Torahiko Hamada Torahiko Hamada
Tôru Hatozaki Tôru Hatozaki
Sentarô Hayashi Sentarô Hayashi
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Storyline

Gennosuke, a clan retainer, kills one of the clan ministers as part of a plot to achieve reform. He is pursued by his former comrades, each hoping to complete the vendetta put on Gennosuke by the clan. With the help of a master swordsman, Yamane, Gennosuke has a chance at survival. Written by Jim Beaver <jumblejim@prodigy.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

18 September 1965 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Sword of the Beast See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film is part of the Criterion Collection, spine #311. See more »

Quotes

Yuuki Gennosuke: This mountain is a dwelling for beasts. I'll turn into a wolf too, before long... and take my share of that almighty gold.
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User Reviews

 
A Cautionary Tale
2 July 2008 | by sc8031See all my reviews

As others have mentioned, this is a solid film about corruption among feudal samurai. The acting and cinematography are both good and the evolution in the characters throughout the film is solid. The action scenes, while not all too common, are very frenetic and gripping.

It is easy to see why this was a Criterion release. There are certainly a number of good samurai movies, but this one isn't like all the others. The title may easily be confused in English with "Sword of Doom" and the protagonist does look quite a bit like Tatsuya Nakadai, but these movies and their themes are completely different.

The movie also stayed with me after watching it. It left me thinking about cults, fraternities and clans. Individuals who dedicate themselves most selflessly to a cause or group, aren't they the easiest group members to sacrifice?


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