starring: Tatsuya Nakadai · Kenichi Hagiwara · Tsutomu Yamazaki
· Jinpachi Nezu
major hit for legendary director Kurosawa (after ten years in isolation).
It's the story of a poor thief who is rescued from the gallows because
he resembles a powerful lord. The man becomes a "kage-musha"
(shadow samurai), the ruler's double. He is actually the one who risks
his life in dangerous conflicts and bloody battles. That is, until the
day the lord unexpectedly dies. Then the thief must assume the role full-time.
movie was actually a joint venture between Kurosawa and "Godzilla"
director Ishiro Honda after they formed a production partnership in 1978.
For the most part, Kurosawa directed the interiors while Honda shot the
exteriors. They also collaborated on the script. Interestingly, Honda
felt movies should have only one director and he always hid his involvement,
giving Kurosawa total filmmaking credit. The company disbanded fifteen
years later, after 5 feature films, with the death of Honda in 1994.
film; single disc; widescreen format (1:85:1), original uncut (180 min.)
version, encoded for ALL REGIONS, playable on any American DVD machine;
in Japanese language with removable English and Chinese subtitles as
Viewer discretion is advised.