Princess Goh / Go-hime (1992)

Teshigahara's Go-hime picks up its story just after Sen no Rikyu committed seppuku. While talking to Lord Oribe, Hideyoshi tries to deny anything to do with it, even though we saw in Rikyu that Hideyoshi not only ordered the suicide but also sent men to guarantee it was carried out. Oribe, a famous daimyo disciple … Continue reading Princess Goh / Go-hime (1992)

Rikyu (1989)

The life and death of Sen no Rikyu, the famous master of the tea ceremony, brought out two very different movies almost simultaneously in 1989. I have already posted about Kei Kumai's Death of a Tea Master, but in Rikyu the subject is taken on by Teshigahara, who came out of an almost two decade … Continue reading Rikyu (1989)

Yagyu Clan Conspiracy / Shogun’s Samurai/ Yagyu ichizoku no inbô (1978)

After 15 years of modern-dress yakuza related movies, in 1978 Kinji Fukasaku suddenly turned to Japanese historical dramas, with a version of the Chusingura story and Yagyu Clan Conspiracy. The brutal realism and kinetic energy of his yakuza films had revived and redirected an entire genre, but Yagyu Conspiracy looks like the work of a … Continue reading Yagyu Clan Conspiracy / Shogun’s Samurai/ Yagyu ichizoku no inbô (1978)

Daredevil in the Castle / Tale of Osaka Castle / Osaka jo monogatari (1961)

Now and then you come across a movie for which you have such high expectations that you may over-react when those expections are not met.  Starring Toshiro Mifune, with Yoshiko Kuga, Kyoko Kagawa, and Isuzu Yamada among others and directed by Inagaki, Daredevil in the Castle promises so much more than it delivers, but it … Continue reading Daredevil in the Castle / Tale of Osaka Castle / Osaka jo monogatari (1961)