Samurai Rebellion (1967)

Samurai Rebellion (1967)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

A father and son prepare to die for their beliefs in this historical drama set in 18th century Japan. While Isaburo Sasahara (Toshiro Mifune) has been loyal to Japan's feudal system all his life, his beliefs begin to change when the local rulers demand that his son Yogoro (Go Kato) give up his bride, who has bore a child that will come to power upon the death of the current ruler. Yogoro dearly loves his wife, and Isaburo respects his daughter-in-law and does not want to be separated from his grandson. When Yogoro refuses to part with his wife and child, he and Isaburo are ordered to kill themselves. They refuse and instead challenge the forces of the feudal leaders to a fight to the death. Director Masaki Kobayashi's work on this film earned him the FIPRESCI Award at the 1967 Venice Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
Art House & International , Classics , Drama
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Criterion Collection


Toshiro Mifune
as Isaburo Sasahara
Takeshi Katô
as Yogoro
Tatsuya Nakadai
as Tatewaki Asano
Tatsuo Matsumara
as Lord Matsudaira
Shigeru Koyama
as Steward Takahashi
Masao Mishima
as Chamberlain Yanase
Isao Yamagata
as Kotani
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Samurai Rebellion

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (4)

No one could seethe better than Mifune, but what gives the movie equal shares of exhilaration and heartbreak is the feeling that pours out of him ...

Full Review… | May 10, 2015
New Yorker
Top Critic

The film's escalation of tension is almost unbearable, and Mifune erupts with a ferocity that's as righteous as it is ultimately tragic, for Kobayashi refuses to soften the film's devastating imbalance of power.

Full Review… | June 16, 2006
Seattle Times
Top Critic

Austerely anti-authoritarian.

Full Review… | August 16, 2005
Village Voice
Top Critic

As extreme a samurai film as I've seen in both senses (the ethics and the violence), and one of the best.

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

A heart-felt action film that is eloquent and haunting in its reflections on the abuse of powers by the ruling class.

Full Review… | September 22, 2016
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

It is obvious that it will end in violence, but the violence is a long time coming. I kept wondering why they didn't just get on with it.

Full Review… | November 25, 2008
Laramie Movie Scope

Audience Reviews for Samurai Rebellion


Oh man, don't you dare cross Toshiro Mifune. The veteran actor has amassed quite a body count during his cinematic reign in which he ruled for an astounding 170 feature-length films, and here he adds a few more notches to his blood-soaked belt. While it can be quite depressing to think of all the poor Japanese folks that Mifune has dispatched over his career, director Masaka Kobayashi goes to painstaking lengths to make sure the viewer knows that at least in this film, he is doing it for good reason. Not only is he giving the finger to the almighty creator by doing away with his creation with his unparalleled swordsmanship, but he is also rebelling against the daimyo of the Aisu clan of which he is a vassal, a crime of which there can be no forgiveness. Although not as impressive visually or thematically intriguing as his 1962 masterpiece Harakiri, Kobayashi once again proves that he is a capable storyteller. All the while examining social order and the price that it imposes on the body of people that it claims to protect. Despite the fact that the material was in the hands of Shinobu Hashimoto, the writer responsible for Harakiri, it is unfortunately lacking the urgency and vitality that made the prior film so special. Yet, not all is lost as Kobayashi delicately sheds light not on the overt violence that this society cultivated, but rather the quiet disruption of the family for the sake of the lord. Though Kobayashi's revisionist tale isn't as gripping as his previous work, it is still a very exciting piece of cinema and further proof that Kurosawa & Ozu aren't the only Japanese directors worthy of our respect.

Reid Volk
Reid Volk

Super Reviewer


Toshiro Mifune is at it again with this Sensational, deeply moving samurai flick thats worth WATCHING!!! AGAIN AND AGAIN!!! The 18th century was a great time in these era of films still the 16th century always has me. I liked the acting and story and costumes and ECT.

Keiko  Aya
Keiko Aya

Super Reviewer

the end was a little upsetting, but the rebel in me was excited for this one. overall a great flick, and even the disappointing end has a redeeming moment.

danny d
danny d

Super Reviewer

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