Shin Heike Monogatari (Taira Clan Saga) (The Taira Clan) (1955)

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Set at the end of the 12th century when several wars for control of Japan disrupted a long era of peace, this tale of "Heike" (another name for the Taira clan) focuses on Taira Kiyomori (Raizo Ichikawa) who fights alongside other members of his clan to at first successfully overcome the Minamoto clan and their bid for power. Battles and intrigue abound, as the puppet Emperor and Buddhist monks take sides in the power struggle. At issue is Kiyomori's parentage, not an unusual problem for the nobility in that era where clandestine liaisons among courtiers and the upper classes were common. ~ Eleanor Mannikka, Rovi

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