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The 47 Ronin


Shot during the war, Mizoguchi’s version of the popular chambara genre, a sub-category of the jidai-geki period film, goes against the grain: dramatic battle scenes give way to artistic choreographies of characters and spaces; Mizoguchi replaces the more usual fast-paced sequences with his characteristic long takes, transforming speed into controlled solemnity, even bringing it to a standstill in his efforts to relieve the pressure. Propaganda seems to collide with the film’s restraint. The starting point of this two-part epic is the misconduct of the Japanese prince Asano, who is sentenced to perform ritual suicide after an impulsive attack on another prince. His followers become ronin. They seek revenge to restore their master’s honor and thus their own. But in early 18th-century Japan, vengeance too is subject to a code of honor.
(Arsenal Kino)


Original title: Genroku Chūshingura
Japan 1941/42, 111/112 min
Language: Japanese
Genre: Historical Film, Drama
Director: Kenji Mizoguchi
Author: Kenichirō Hara, Yoshikata Yoda
DOP: Kōhei Sugiyama
Montage: Takako Kuji
Music: Shirō Fukai
Cast: Chōjuro Kawarasaki, Kanemon Nakamura, Kunitarō Kawarazaki, Utaemon Ichikawa



  • OV Original version
  • OmU Original with German subtitles
  • OmeU Original with English subtitles
English/with English subtitles
All languages

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