This is the story of seven samurai who stood up for the forsaken and abandoned souls of society. They risked their lives for these peasants against a band of bandits. They didn't fight for money, glory, or legacy. They fought because it was the right thing to do...
This is the masterpiece that all epics are measured by.
Once in a while a movie comes along of such pure genius that it sets the standard for everything in its genre that comes after it; "The Seven Samurai" is one of them. The plot is simple enough; a small Japanese village in the 16th century is periodically pillaged by a roving gang of brigands and hires seven samurai for protection. If this seems similar to "The Magnificent Seven", it is; the "Mag Seven" was a direct [remake] of "The Seven Samurai", and a much inferior film. Kurosawa got everything right in this movie. The acting, the cinematography, and above all, the directing, are absolutely perfect. Toshiro Mifune was never better than in his portrayal of Kikuchiyo, the wannabe samurai who despises his farm roots. Takashi Shimura is strong and sympathetic as Kambei Shimada, the aging samurai who recruits the other six, Yoshio Tsuchiya is excellent as Rikichi, the village peasant who has his own reasons for wanting revenge on the brigands, and Seiji Miyaguchi gives a fascinating performance as Kyuzo, the expert swordsman whose one interest is perfecting his skill as a killing machine. The climactic battle, shot in a torrential downpour, is like nothing I have ever seen on film. The word "awesome" seems inadequate in attempting to describe the total experience of "The Seven Samurai". It's among the ten best films ever produced in any country in the history of film-making.
Co-written, edited and directed by Akira Kurosawa in 1954, this Japanese epic drama depicts the story of a village of farmers during the warlord-period of the late 16th century.
The hired seven samurai-retainers combat bandits who will return after the harvest to steal their crops.
This film has become a highly influential movie considered as one of the most remade-reworked-referenced films in cinema.
If you're going to watch ONE Kurosawa film in your life, this should be it. Seven Samurai represents Kurosawa's BEST work and features my favorite role for Mifune. Although long, the story elements flow and the events integrate and work really well--it's almost flawless. There is just something so timeless about this work, and what it represents: the human condition and the struggles we take to overcome these struggles, even at the expense of one's life. It's seriously one of those films that makes you think for days--it resonates that much.
Raw showcase of human nature via multi plots that took over centre stage like incoming waves for three hours. Glad when it all ended, was feeling mentally exhausted. The Magnificent Seven was supposed to be a remake of this movie but obviously targeted a very different group of viewers, and I don't mean East vs. West. Great movie but not for everybody.
Seven Samurai (Japanese movie):
I felt that the expressions portrayed on the characters’ chiseled faces bleed a sort of pure-hearted kabuki style of artful acting. I think that the expressions, no matter what they were expressing, were done with an utmost seeming sincerity for parts they portrayed and played.
I finely felt that the aura of humility emanated from the meek farmers in the opening of this movie, with regards to the stern severity and heavy harshness, projected an apt and accurate kind of depicting world in which they, the meek minded farmers, were being forced to face.
Brutal battle bouts happened over the course of several daunting days; and ultimately, several samurai fell against the massive hordes of murdering and pillaging marauders.
So many variations and ways were amongst the samurai heroes: wisdom, compassion, techniques, humor, and personal honors.
Ganbei was the wise discerning tactician and group leader.
Kyzou was the, mostly quiescent, master swordsman that had his sword do the talking.
Katsushiro, the neophyte and novice samurai-in-training, who was from the aristocracy, acted also like a bard absorbing his new sights and saga journeys amongst his heroes, the samurais.
Most of the hero samurai are mild mannered except for Mifune (aka:Kikkochu), who mostly had acted like a big, grown up kid. But Kikkochu has dramatic originating reasons for these manners, which gets revealed in the movie towards the end.
Three of the samurai seemed interchangeable to me at most times, and I often forgot which was which as they did not seem to be as distinguishable in character and in bodily appearance as those I previously listed.
To those who transcribed and pieced together the English subtitles, I thought they were done as with a cautious eloquence and with a keen crispness. The seeming flow of words, were as of the human soul that stirs in each of us, telling of the ambience of one’s naturally feeling environment.
And the ambient auditory and visual aesthetics of the outer-world stages were pretty and pleasing.
The movie has two terrific audio soundtracks with expertise commentary coming from masters, whom study Japanese film cinema and whom exclusively study Akira Kurosawa films. When one finishes this movie on one’s own, I’d recommend listening to at least one of the two commentary tracks. If it’s your first run thru of this movie, it might not be too tough to listen to the commentaries…in fact it might make it more easy and enjoyable to listen to the commentaries first…I just suggested that one might want to first enjoy this film without commentaries so as not be told the director’s every employed technique and every employed plot device. But by whatever is chosen, Seven Samurai will still be an awesome experience (to be beheld by any connoisseur of the cinema experience). So enjoy!
Additional thoughts: Several years ago I had watched the animated, science-fiction, version of the original Seven Samurai movie. Another thought dealing with correlation comes to mind when watching the movie, “Last Samurai”, were it seems some scenes are of similar and of verisimilar scope to that of the “Seven Samurai” film.
Even if the movie was done in black and white, which I don’t personally mind, it still was a magnificent movie. To all who were responsible for this movie, it was an excellent construction and collaboration of classical cinematography. Thank you. Rating: 5.0/5.0; Xandor Who
5 of 5 stars. Just great storytelling. Filmed in black and white, which adds to the Japanese compositions.
The best samurai movie ever, watch this and all other movies about samurai are cartoons compared.
This is an epic film!
shayne_17 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over
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