Very little seems to capture my imagination as much as a well-made samurai drama (save maybe a western – the American equivalent to the Japanese samurai film). While I’ve never been able to pinpoint exactly what it is about the samurai that fascinates me so much – their romanticized views on the world, their strict code of honor, their unwavering loyalties and dedication to the craft of swordsmanship – these Eastern knights in shining armor have been the focus of some of the finest and most influential films in cinema. From Sergio Leone to George Lucas to John Sturges, their influence, particularly that of the legendary Akira Kurosawa, has been acknowledged time and time again. Recently watching the brilliant Love and Honor, I felt inspired to whip this up and get some discussion going on all of our favorite samurai films, and maybe in the process find myself some recommendations.
Continue on and make sure to rank yours in the comments!
10. Seppuku (Kobayashi, 1962)
9. Rashomon (Kurosawa, 1950)
8. Samurai Rebellion (Kobayashi, 1967)
7. The Hidden Blade (Yamada, 2004)
6. Kagemusha (Kurosawa, 1980)
5. Sword of Doom (Okamoto, 1966)
4. Yojimbo (Kurosawa, 1961)
3. The Twilight Samurai (Yamada, 2002)
2. Seven Samurai (Kurosawa, 1954)
1. Samurai trilogy aka Musashi Miyamoto (Inagaki, 1954, 1955, 1956)