Yojimbo

( 13 )

Overview

Toshiro Mifune portrays a Samurai who finds himself in the middle of a feud-torn Japanese village. Neither side is particularly honorable, but Mifune is hungry and impoverished, so he agrees to work as bodyguard or Yojimbo for a silk merchant Kamatari Fujiwara against a sake merchant Takashi Shimura. He then pretends to go to work for the other, the better to let the enemies tear each other apart. Imprisoned for his "treachery," he escapes just in time to watch the two warring sides wipe each other out. This was ...
See more details below
DVD (Wide Screen / Subtitled / B&W)
$38.68
BN.com price
(Save 3%)$39.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (DVD)
  • All (7) from $25.05   
  • New (5) from $25.05   
  • Used (2) from $30.90   

Overview

Toshiro Mifune portrays a Samurai who finds himself in the middle of a feud-torn Japanese village. Neither side is particularly honorable, but Mifune is hungry and impoverished, so he agrees to work as bodyguard or Yojimbo for a silk merchant Kamatari Fujiwara against a sake merchant Takashi Shimura. He then pretends to go to work for the other, the better to let the enemies tear each other apart. Imprisoned for his "treachery," he escapes just in time to watch the two warring sides wipe each other out. This was his plan all along, and now that peace has been restored, he leaves the village for further exploits. Yes, Yojimbo was the prototype for the Clint Eastwood "Man with No Name" picture A Fistful of Dollars 1964. The difference is that Fistful relies on Eastwood for its success, whereas Yojimbo scores on every creative level, from director Akira Kurosawa to cinematographer Kazuo Miyagawa to Mifune's classic lead performance.
Read More Show Less

Special Features

All-new, restored high-definition digital transfer; Optional Dolby Digital 3.0 soundtrack, preserving the original Perspecta simulated stereo effects; Audio commentary by film historian and Kurosawa scholar Stephen Prince; A 45-minute documentary on the making of Yojimbo, created as part of the Toho Masterworks series Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create; Theatrical trailer and teaser; Stills gallery of behind-the-scenes photos; New and improved English subtitle translation; A booklet featuring an essay by critic Alexander Sesonske and notes from Kurosawa and his cast and crew
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Jonathan Crow
Yojimbo is both a brilliant reworking of the samurai genre and arguably director Akira Kurosawa's most influential work. Toshiro Mifune gives the finest performance of his stellar career as Sanjuro, a bored, flea-bitten, and thoroughly amoral ronin who possesses almost superhuman swordmanship. Like a Greek god descending from Mount Olympus, Sanjuro comes upon a village torn asunder by two rival groups and cleans up the town. Like Gary Cooper in High Noon (1952), Sanjuro finds himself in a village full of greedy, weak, and bad people that probably does not deserve saving. Unlike Cooper, whose face grows grim with the moral importance of his act, Sanjuro smirks with anarchic glee as he deftly picks one side against the other. With a wry, subversive wit, Kurosawa marries his muscular narrative to a swaggering visual style, aided by the masterful cinematography of Kazuo Miyagawa. From the Sanjuro's final duel with young gun-toting thug Unosuke (Tatsuya Nakadai) to the single grotesque image of a dog clutching a human hand at the film's outset, Yojimbo crackles with a dynamic energy that rivets and entertains. Though Yojimbo spun off a number of remakes, including Sergio Leone's A Fistful of Dollars (1964) and Walter Hill's Last Man Standing (1996), none matches the film's technical brilliance and dark humor.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/23/2007
  • UPC: 715515020824
  • Original Release: 1961
  • Rating:

  • Source: Criterion
  • Region Code: 1
  • Presentation: Wide Screen / Subtitled / B&W
  • Time: 1:50:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 25,301

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Toshiro Mifune Sanjuro Kuwabatake
Eijiro Tono Gonji the Sake Seller
Seizaburo Kawazu Seibei
Tatsuya Nakadai Unosuke
Isuzu Yamada Orin
Daisuke Kato Inokichi
Hiroshi Tachikawa Yoichiro
Kamatari Fujiwara Tazaemon
Kyu Sazanka Ushitora
Susumu Fujita Homma
Yosuke Natsuki Farmer's Son
Akira Nishimura Kuma
Ikio Sawamura Hansuke
Takashi Shimura Tokuemon
Yoshio Tsuchiya Kohei the Farmer
Yoko Tsukasa Nui
Atsushi Watanabe Coffin Maker
Technical Credits
Akira Kurosawa Director, Editor, Screenwriter
Kazuo Miyagawa Cinematographer
Shinobu Muraki Production Designer
Yoshiro Muraki Costumes/Costume Designer, Production Designer
Hideo Oguni Screenwriter
Tomoyuki Tanaka Producer
Ryuzo Kikushima Producer, Screenwriter
Masaru Sato Score Composer
Dashiell Hammett Source Author
Read More Show Less

Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Yojimbo
1. Stick [5:56]
2. Sides [10:22]
3. Demonstration [3:44]
4. Price [1:09]
5. Plot [2:19]
6. Names [2:18]
7. Noon [6:52]
8. Inspections [6:13]
9. Costs [3:38]
10. Unosuke [3:52]
11. Fired [3:04]
12. Bargain [1:41]
13. Information [4:46]
14. Exchange [3:14]
15. Mothers [4:00]
16. Betrayed [2:02]
17. Bodyguard [1:57]
18. Gone [4:44]
19. Retaliation [1:44]
20. Note [4:57]
21. Pounding [4:36]
22. Chest [9:01]
23. Smoke [5:43]
24. Duped [1:46]
25. Training [1:27]
26. Payback [9:25]
1. Monumental [5:56]
2. Influences [10:22]
3. Surrogate [3:44]
4. Ryo [1:09]
5. Neo-Confucianism [2:19]
6. Abstract [2:18]
7. Sly [6:52]
8. Generations [6:13]
9. Bushido [3:38]
10. Capitalism [3:52]
11. Yakuza [3:04]
12. Lighting [1:41]
13. Music [4:46]
14. Mirrored [3:14]
15. Extortion [4:00]
16. Oka [2:02]
17. Pivotal [1:57]
18. Action [4:44]
19. Depravity [1:44]
20. Comedy [4:57]
21. Hammett [4:36]
22. References [9:01]
23. Impact [5:43]
24. Spectral [1:46]
25. Soul [1:27]
26. Fantasy [9:25]
1. Intro [1:30]
2. Innovations [11:34]
3. Set [5:02]
4. Telephoto [9:34]
5. Rival [1:58]
6. Elements [4:10]
7. Mifune [6:03]
8. Impact [4:40]
Read More Show Less

Menu

Disc #1 -- Yojimbo
   Play the Movie
   Chapters
   Bars
   Commentary
      Commentary: Off
      Commentary: On
      Index
      Bars
   Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create
      Play
      Index
   Theatrical Trailer
   Teaser
   Stills Gallery
   Setup
      Audio Options
         Dolby Digital Mono 1.0
         Dolby Digital Perspecta 3.0
         Commentary
      Subtitles
         Subtitles: On
         Subtitles: Off
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(12)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Japanese style anti-hero movie, inspiration for Sergio Leone's "A Fistful Of Dollars"

    A very entertaining movie that has inspired numerous characters in other action movies.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    When Destiny is as Simple as the Toss of a Stick

    The beginning of this tale, when our hero tosses a stick into the air to see which way it lands to choose his path, is just one of the many elements which makes this such an amazing story and one my favorites of Kurosawa’s many masterpieces. What the bodyguard chooses to do first with his newfound independence is quite surprising and ambitious, like piecing together an amazingly complex jigsaw puzzle made of human nature, or staging a performance of an epic masterpiece with no previous management, production, or directing skills. But I guess he may as well tackle a mountain, since there is not much use starting small with his skills and personality. As he orchestrates the deception, our hero is much like a master puppeteer with exquisite timing and talent to incite the mayhem to achieve his goal. While the basic theme of this story is not unique – the result of greed, manipulation of others, and the changing of the world (tradition vs. progression) – many factors add an interesting and unusual charm to this film. There are plots within plots, surprising deception, perfectly paced mounting tension, unpredictable plot twists, stories within stories, distinctive and amusing characters (the big guy with his huge mallet is a lot of fun), the seemingly never-ending face offs, backstabbing, character flaws and our hero continually placed in the perfect position to observe, listen, and evaluate. Also, the bodyguard’s impeccable timing in manipulation of both sides is nice, fulfilling our expectations and keeping the story moving along. What if bodyguards were really like this? (mischievous, brilliant, manipulative) The famous people of the world would be in terrible trouble. The humor in this story is wonderful, even the macabre humor of the dog carrying the human hand in its mouth while trotting along to fairly spunky music. I also love the funnier fight sequences, which seem to come right out of clown school and resemble football skirmishes instead of battles. In several of the scenes, it appears that the swordsmen are miming roasting marshmallows instead of fighting with their weapons. Nice addition of lightness to a serious tale. Our hero sticking around after he has discontinued his services purely for “the entertainment” also accentuates the humor aspect of this movie. The mix of character types is also interesting including a dominatrix, a prodigal son, a damsel in distress, several amusing drunks, and many bumbling idiots. The ease in which our hero is able to manipulate these human beings is extremely unbelievable however, many aspects of this film fall into that category and it is still a wonderful story. This is one of those rare instances in which certain trite, far-fetched, and predictable elements are actually good and serve to enhance the story. The nature symbolism is a nice addition to this film including the cleansing rain allowing us to shift gears from Act I to Act II, and the dust storm, which precedes the more unpredictable part of the story serving to unsettle and disorient us. Finally, the shadowy, light dancing, night fires scene is amazing, intensifying the town’s debauchery and our hero finally stepping up to get involved in the action before ultimately getting caught in his own web. This scene is perfect, like an expertly lighted stage drawing us into Act III. I have only described a few of the wonderful features of this film. There are many others, which warrant several viewings to truly appreciate the complexities of this story. For those who enjoy this movie, I also recommend the sequel, Sanjuro, which is equally well done. --J.H. Sweet, author of The Fairy Chronicles, and Kurosawa fan.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Another "homage" to Kurosawa

    This film is a splendid example of Japanese cinema, and a credit to cinema in general. In addition to the Eastwood movie, it was also remade more recently as "Last Mans Standing", set in the Southwest in the Twenties, with Bruce Willis playing the "bodyguard" who turns two rival gangs against each other. More film noir than western, it stands on its own well for those who enjoy a well-told story and good acting, and who can handle an elevated body count.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 29, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 8, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews