24 user 39 critic

The Great Yokai War (2005)

Yôkai daisensô (original title)
A young boy is chosen as the defender of good and must team up with Japan's ancient spirits and creatures of lore to destroy the forces of evil.


Takashi Miike


Hiroshi Aramata (novel), Takashi Miike (screenplay) | 2 more credits »

On Disc

at Amazon

2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Ryûnosuke Kamiki ... Tadashi Ino (as Ryuunosuke Kamiki)
Hiroyuki Miyasako Hiroyuki Miyasako ... Sata
Chiaki Kuriyama ... Agi
Bunta Sugawara ... Shuntaro Ino
Kaho Minami ... Youko Ino
Riko Narumi ... Tataru Ino
Etsushi Toyokawa Etsushi Toyokawa ... Lord Yasunori Kato
Kiyoshirô Imawano Kiyoshirô Imawano ... General Nurarihyon
Seiko Iwaidô Seiko Iwaidô ... Kawahime, the River Princess (as Mai Takahashi)
Masaomi Kondô Masaomi Kondô ... Shojo, the Kirin Herald
Sadao Abe Sadao Abe ... Kawataro, the River Sprite
Takashi Okamura Takashi Okamura ... Azuki-Bean Washer
Naoto Takenaka ... Lamp-Oil
Ken'ichi Endô Ken'ichi Endô ... Ou Tengu
Renji Ishibashi ... Ou Kubi


This is the story of a young boy who moves to a small town after the divorce of his parents. At a local festival, he becomes an unlikely hero when he is chosen as the "Kirin Rider," a protector of all things good. And he must lead Japan's ancient Yokai spirits in their apocalyptic war against the evil bizarre-looking monsters. Written by Anthony Pereyra {hypersonic91@yahoo.com}

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for fantasy violence and scary images | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official site





Release Date:

6 August 2005 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Spook Warfare See more »

Filming Locations:

Japan See more »


Box Office


JPY 1,300,000,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Shigeru Mizuki himself appears briefly in the film as the Demon King. See more »


Kawahime, the River Princess: People live in ignorance. Constantly turning a blind eye. Those that let go of their past, have no future.
See more »


References Zebraman (2004) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Interesting Movie
5 September 2011 | by rls0812See all my reviews

It's not very often I run across a movie that deals with parts of Japanese culture, especially yokai ( translated as " spirit " or " demon " ) .

After watching this, I am of the strong opinion this should have been an anime, not a real life movie.

The limited budget was very apparent in the CG effects used. It just looks cartoony. The costumes of the real life actors were not very well done either.

Set design was all over the place. Ranging from good, to cheap, to cartoon ( when rendered in CG ).

The acting I can not comment on, since I have the dubbed American version. The dub acting, on the other hand, was bad. The emotions were not effectively relayed.

The dub syncing is literally the worse I have ever seen in ANY dubbed movie, from ANY time period. " Martial arts " movies I have watched from the 70's have better voice syncing than this movie made only a few years ago! You can clearly see characters there, not moving their mouths, as dub dialog is spoken.

Also hearing about 50% of the movie, filled with the same " fearful screams " of the main character, gets real annoying, real quick!

Camera control is alright, though continuity issues pop up.

A good example is the main character and the grandfather character are walking along a street talking. In mid conversation it jump cuts to them sitting a bridge, still talking like nothing happened.

Speaking of continuity, there are quite a few scenes that seem like they were cut short, or major chunks were removed.

A good example of this is " grandfather's " six English word long song ( Ode to Azuki Bean ) . That shot just randomly appears, for no reason in between 2 other scenes.

I have been interested in yokai lore for quite some time, and have studied the subject on my own. It may seem like nit picking, but the way yokai are portrayed in this film is VERY inaccurate. Most of them are cast as " just silly creatures ", though quite a few I recognized in the group shots, are in fact quite violent by nature.

The worst part of this movie is the ending. No were in this movie they set up for the resolution to happen the way it does. It just happens, as a huge, unexplained anti-climaxed plot hole.

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