Who doesn't like them? The Samurai movies! We all know the fantastic movies with Toshiro Mifune. Those movies from the 70s with those nice flutes and fancy sounds. Love it! At those times those actors really can use a sword.... There are nice movies, better movies but I am looking for some (forgotten diamants)...
Let's make a list of the good ones shall we? I make a start:
- 13 assasins - Hara Kiri - Ran - Mikogami Trilogy (TIP) - Samurai assasin - Lone wolf and a cub series - Zatoichi - The last samurai (non japanese) - 7 samurai - Kagemusha - Twighlight samurai - Hidden blade - Ame agaru (TIP)
Ah Chambara! What would we do without you! I really hope that this topic might get a few more added to it, as any suggestions would help me watch decent (or at least enjoyable… ) films. I have added a few of my own notes to these please pay no notice to these, as I like the sound of my own typing (as I have been told far to often that I have no understanding of good or bad acting…)
A different list, with a few that have been mentioned before, as I have far too much time on my hands at the moment,
Films Twilight Samurai – Another late Edo film, this time about a quite and dutiful Samurai, who is skilled with a Wakizashi, interesting to watch but with less action than many of the others When the Last Sword is Drawn - a great film about one of the Shinsengumi, a pro-Bakufu group at the end of the Edo period, Yoshimura Kanishiro’s story is told by his son-in-law and old (enemy?) colleague, its quite recent and I personally watch it over and over… The Last Samurai – As mentioned by Mischa, this is not made by Japan (and indeed I think it was actually filmed in New Zealand), an enjoyable film which looks at the death of the Samurai Caste in the Meiji Restoration, although very Hollywood I really enjoyed it, one of my favorite Tom Cruise films. Zatoichi (2003) – A much more recent Zatoichi was made, I loved this film, great little and large fights. Red Sun – Another non-Japanese film, set in America, it follows a Yojimbo(?) who chases a gang that has stolen a Katana meant for the President of America, an enjoyable film with interesting fight scenes. Akira Kurosawa Ran – I found this to be epic, and one of the first Japanese films I watched, for those who played the late 90’s game Shogun: Total War, its in the intro, this is very long and is an epic tale (based of King Lear?) Seven Samurai – Another of the Greats (with a capital!) with bits of armour attached in the wrong place, I can’t do this film enough justice Yojimbo – This is one bloody film, a bit grimmer than Seven Samurai, it is great and like many others it is the inspiration for one of the great Cowboy movies (I forget which one) Throne of Blood – One of the greats, definitely one of my favorite films, this shows of great armor, it is Macbeth done by Kurosawa and is my favorite example of any Shakespeare put into film. I am in awe of it, and have watched it repeatedly, but it seems to go on forever! Kagemusha – This film is about on of the great Daimyo of the Sengoku Jidia and what happened after his death… or at least it is a good view on what could have happened to Takeda Shingen, the Tiger of Kai! Red Beard – About a young man training to be a Doctor who arrive in a Clinic run by the infamous Red Beard, not Chambara.
Film Series Zatoichi (1962 – 1989) – There is a long series (probably several others as well) of Zatoichi films by a great actor, I quite enjoyed watching them (as I type this they are available to watch on youtube…), pretty much all seem to revolve around Zatoichi killing lots of gambling Yakuza henchmen! But I haven’t watched them all, or sadly any in full…
TV Programs Shogun (English Series) Mini review; I loved this series, it is one of the interesting book to TV conversions that is enjoyable to watch, I found it really enjoyable (and so is the book!)
I am aware that some Japanese channels do documentaries/period drama’s, unfortunately I have only heard of two of these (I have heard that one of the larger channels in Japan does one every year). Does anyone know if they are available with English subs/dubbed…
I hope this is interesting and that you can add your own suggestions and thoughts, but as ever we are all here to talk about armor (which is why this is off topic!)