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Recomend me some Samurai Films

Discussion in 'Movie Forum' started by BrianC, May 10, 2004.

  1. BrianC

    BrianC
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    After watching Kill Bill I decided to get some "proper" Samurai films, so I've brought some of the more obvious ones, all of which I have enjoyed:

    Seven Samurai
    Rashomon
    YoJimbo!
    Zatouchi

    What should be next on my shopping list, and why?

    Thanks for your help in advance!
     
  2. Miyazaki

    Miyazaki
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    "Twilight Samurai" should be out at cinemas here soon, and is getting rave reviews. Also get the tv mini-series "Shogun" which is out on dvd, and rather superb.

    "Ran" is also another sweeping Kurosawa epic, and I could do nothing but recommend all his films.
     
  3. James45

    James45
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    Definitely Twilight Samurai, The Last Samurai is also worthy of mention too... it feels (and looks) like a japanese film.
     
  4. Chibouk

    Chibouk
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    I'm not sure that Last Samurai has a 'Japanese feel to it', but it's not a bad film overall.

    Other recommendations you could try would include the Lone Wolf and Cub series of 6 films. These really are excellent, but make sure you go for the new R1 releases from Animeigo, as the transfers are first class. The first 2 films were combined in to one for the American market and retitled as Shogun Assassin, which BB and the Bride watch together in Kill Bill 2.

    You could always go for the original Zatoichi films as well. There're 26 of those to get your teeth in to. :D

    Also, have a look at When the Last Sword is Drawn. Top Samurai action. The Korean 2 disker seem to be the one to go for at a reasonably price.

    HTH
     
  5. captaineyecatch

    captaineyecatch
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    The Lone wolf and cub series aka Baby cart series are highly recommended. Get the R1 release of these, stunning remastering have been done making them look the best they ever will.
    Lady snowblood 1+2 are worth a look especially 1 again due soon on R1 and looking great.
    Also the new remake of Zatoichi is superb and well worth the £8 from cdwow.
     
  6. Rambo John J

    Rambo John J
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    get the Lady Snowblood movies. See where O-Ren Ishii came from. She's like a female Ogami Ito (the guy from Lone Wolf & Cub) and really gives it some with her katana.
    The Animego discs (R1) should be better than the R2 versions.
     
  7. James45

    James45
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    The pacing and photography are very 'Japanese'.
     
  8. Chibouk

    Chibouk
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    I'm not saying you're wrong matey, but I didn't really get the same feeling. I know what you mean about Japanese films having a particular feeling, but I really didn't pick that up from Last Samurai.

    The ending is very much a Hollywood effort, though. :rotfl:
     
  9. James45

    James45
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    definitely... and I think it was a fairly confused ending as well, I'm not sure it knew what point it wanted to make... but made it anyway. Some of the heavily shadowed shots of Cruise recovering in the house look very, very similiar to some of the stuff in Twilight Samurai.
     
  10. Wasabi

    Wasabi
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    Definitely RAN!!!

    Cd-wow has a new reg2 2disk version (don't know the transfer quality) for £13.49 with the discount link, and a reg1 masterworks ed which has a good transfer, for £12.49 with the link.

    Perhaps someone has bought the new Ran Reg2, who can share with us the picture verdict?

    Tests of wellspring ed
    http://www.dvdverdict.com/reviews/ranmasterworks.php
    http://www.digitallyobsessed.com/showreview.php3?ID=4645
    http://www.classicsondvd.com/ran.htm
    http://www.dvdjournal.com/reviews/r/ran_me.shtml
    http://www.thegline.com/dvd-of-the-week/2003/03-03-2003.htm

    Wasabi
     
  11. Miyazaki

    Miyazaki
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    Not exactly Samurai, but get your hands on the film 'Hero'. It is a sublime Chinese epic, which mirrors 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon' in several forms, and certainly you will like the former if you liked the latter.

    Also stars Zhang Ziyi who stars as 'Moon', who was 'Sha-Long' in 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon'. 'Hero' also stars Jet Li as well.
     
  12. TheBigApple

    TheBigApple
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    Not a movie but I would recommend the animated series Samurai Jack.
     
  13. joboy

    joboy
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    Could try some of the following also, again not strictly samurai, but very good none the less

    These are all in the Crouching Tiger.. / Hero vein
    Legend Of The Evil Lake (a kind of mix of Gladiator, Crouching Tiger.. and The Exorcist)
    Musa (aka The Warrior)
    Warriors of Heaven and Earth.

    Can also definitely recommend Twilight Samurai

    I also recently enjoyed the film "Streets of Ronin", took me a while to get into it but definitely worth it by the end.

    A good review site of Asian cinema is Kung Fu Cult Cinema (http://www.kfccinema.com/)

    Happy purchasing!
     
  14. joboy

    joboy
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  15. Kamui

    Kamui
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    I can also recommend the Samurai Trilogy.
     
  16. Azrikam

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    Aw, all the main ones have been mentioned. In that case, I'll second (or third) the Samurai Trilogy. Just beautiful films to watch.

    Also, as joboy mentioned, Musa (The Warrior) is an absolutely fantastic film. Best character development I've seen in a film in the last few years.

    Oh, and Samurai Jack too. :)
     
  17. Markmw

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    Haven't watched the Samurai Trilogy but have heard very good things. However, have been put off buying it by comments on the Criterion forum saying the quality of the DVDs were relatively poor compared to other Criterions, ie v poor transfers.

    I would also advocate Ran - fabulous battle scenes with Kurosawa indulging himself, and getting away with it, since it's basically Shakespeare's King Lear.
     
  18. James45

    James45
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    can't believe I forgot the samurai trilogy, I've only seen the first one but it does bode very well for the rest of the trilogy.
    Yes the transfers aren't great and the prints are very dirty but criterion have just released the films in a box set at a lower price.
     
  19. Markmw

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    Someone on the forum said it around a 22% saving by buying the box rather than the individual films (on Criterion RRP), and that's reflected on CD-Wow. The general speculation tho was that it was unlikely that new transfers would be done for the trilogy.

    http://www.criterionforum.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=232
     
  20. daisy

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    I remember someone recommending Babycart series, and "Babycart - At The River Styx" in particular. Has anyone heard of these, and knows where is the best place to buy?
     
  21. Dellboy

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    On Region 1 they have just released
    Onibaba

    If you enjoyed the Akira Kurosawa films then there is:

    Sanjuro (the follow up film to Yojimbo)
    Throne of Blood
    Kagemusha
    Red Beard

    All classic samurai films.
     
  22. Markmw

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    Onibaba is more a horror with moral overtones rather than a samurai film but definately worth a look.

    I haven't watched it yet but I took a blind punt recently purely on the strength of the title and actors - Zatoichi vs Yojimbo, ie Katsu and Mifune in the same film. How can that not be good? I bought the R1 but have seen the R2 in Virgin in their sale for around a fiver (grrr).
     
  23. Rambo John J

    Rambo John J
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    they're classics. The UK discs were all non-anamorphic, but you can get the whole series for around £6 each at the moment in the Virgin and HMV sales.
    If you want a better presentation go with the r1 releases, but I don't think they've all been released yet.
    A fine 6 movie series of very beautiful looking, lyrical,bloody movies
    I can't remember the right order after the 2nd film, but you should look for

    Sword of Vengeance
    Baby Cart at the River Styx
    Baby Cart in Peril
    Baby cart to Hades
    Baby Cart in the land of demons
    White Heaven in Hell
     
  24. James45

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    That's right they are the same transfers (they're the same releases) just packaged together as a trilogy at a discounted rate.
     
  25. Markmw

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    Sorry - I was ambiguous - the speculation was that Criterion did not intend to look at offering new transfers at all in the future, for any of these films. By all accounts these films are fairly high on the list of DVDs that forum members thought could do with an overhaul - in the same way that Charade was re-issued.
     
  26. Sami

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    Don't forget that the bigest influence for the Kill Bill films was also the old Shaw Brothers flicks (hence the big SB at the start of the movie)

    CD WOW have all the re-released Celestial versions of these movies.. I'd recommend:

    Killer Clans

    Eight Diagram Pole Fighter (Starring Gordon Liu who played Pei Mei and Balled Headed Crazy 88 bloke)

    Come Drink With Me

    Water Margin

    All Men Are Brothers

    Other films that are worth looking out for are:

    Duel To the Death (might not be Shaw Bros but ****ing
    amazing)
    36th Chamber
    Return to The 36th Chamber
    Mad Monkey Kung Fu

    I'd recommend all of the above with no hesitation whatsoever!

    You can read reviews of the above films at these sites:

    http://www.dragonsdenuk.com/
    http://www.kungfucinema.com/
     
  27. Azrikam

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    For Shaw classics, don't miss Five Deadly Venoms and the incredibly campy (but also hilarious) Infra-Man.
     
  28. James45

    James45
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    ok if we're veering away from strictly samurai films then The Prodigal Son is a must have.
     
  29. Sami

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    True dat.. though I was trying to keep as within the realms of KB influenced as possible....

    Five Deadly Venoms certainly is a classic!

    The link to buy the Shaw Brothers titles from CD WOW is:

    http://www10.cd-wow.com/browse_categories.php?category=3031
     
  30. inzaman

    inzaman
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    This is quite a good thread, i think that i will order the samurai trilogy.
    Keep'em coming :)
     

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