47 Ronin, The (Parts I & II)

  • 1941
  • Movie
  • NR
  • Historical

Extolling the strong will of the Japanese people, Kenji Mizoguchi's wartime, two-part historical epic about revenge and self-sacrifice is only one of dozens of versions of this popular tale, most of them based on a Kabuki play. The first part of the film concerns a group of samurai who become leaderless when their master dies, focusing on the decision of...read more

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Extolling the strong will of the Japanese people, Kenji Mizoguchi's wartime, two-part historical epic about revenge and self-sacrifice is only one of dozens of versions of this popular tale, most of them based on a Kabuki play. The first part of the film concerns a group of samurai who

become leaderless when their master dies, focusing on the decision of 47 of them to take revenge on the man responsible. In the second part, after years of living apart, the loyal 47 carry out their deed and, to be reunited with their master, commit mass suicide. Because Mizoguchi was forced to

direct this ambitious film it is not generally considered as one of his finest works. But despite the director's reported lack of emotional and personal involvement in the project, THE 47 RONIN is, at the very least, a remarkable technical achievement. The sets (featuring life-size replicas) are

astounding and beautifully detailed, and the camerawork, with its extensive use of tracking and crane shots, is simply breathtaking. The videocassette, like all of those in the Japanese series, offers a crisp, English-subtitled print.

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  • Rating: NR
  • Review: Extolling the strong will of the Japanese people, Kenji Mizoguchi's wartime, two-part historical epic about revenge and self-sacrifice is only one of dozens of versions of this popular tale, most of them based on a Kabuki play. The first part of the film c… (more)

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