Seven Samurai

Seven Samurai ★★★★★

Letterboxd Season Challenge: "Master of the East Week; Akira Kurosawa"
Scavenger Hunt 6! "A film featuring a cop who is a samurai (or just a plain old samurai)!":
My 100 Favourite Movies (Not 100% in order):

"So. Again we are defeated."
"The farmers have won. Not us."

The Maginficent Seven is one of my favourite westerns, and one of my favourite films that I've seen so I'm really surprised that it took me as long as it did to getting around to watching the original 1954 version by Akira Kurosawa, which also happens to be the first film that I've watched by the legendary director and based on what I've seen here this won't be the last, because despite the rather lengthy runtime of 207mins, this film is engrossing, captivating and a masterpiece, instantly leaping into my 100 Favourite Movies List with just one viewing. It's powerful, compelling and one of the strongest films that I've seen.

When a village comes under attack from a group of bandits, they decide that they need help from Samurai and stumble across an old veteran going through hard times, who is willing to help and enlists six others to help aid the defence. Having seen The Magnificent Seven before I already knew the story, but Seven Samurai still blew me away, with the direction handled incredibly well, and marks one what is most certainly the longest film that I've seen in both black and white and from a country other than America or the US. It might be the longest film that I've seen full stop, but I'm not 100% sure on that (it's certainly in the Top 5), however, that didn't make it feel dragged out at all. In fact, this is one of the few movies where you don't really feel like you're actually watching that long a film, as it went by pretty quickly and was the perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon after watching Everest the previous night.

The acting is, particularly from Toshiro Mifune, superb, and the film really benefits from it. The plotting is handled well and the characters are also done strongly. There's a strong emotional range that doesn't just stop at humour, and Kurosawa handles everything incredibly well. It's easy to see the many films that this movie has influenced - one of the more obvious ones being The Magnificent Seven, but Kurosawa's masterpiece is something that fully deserves all the critical acclaim it can get and if you haven't seen it already I strongly encourage you to go and check it out now. Trust me, if you're worried it will disappoint, it won't.

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