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Sanjuro: Remastered Edition (The Criterion Collection)


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Sanjuro: Remastered Edition (The Criterion Collection) + Seven Samurai (The Criterion Collection) + Rashomon
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Product Details

  • Actors: Toshirô Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Keiju Kobayashi, Yûnosuke Itô, Yûzô Kayama
  • Directors: Akira Kurosawa
  • Writers: Akira Kurosawa, Ryûzô Kikushima, Hideo Oguni, Shûgorô Yamamoto
  • Producers: Ryûzô Kikushima, Tomoyuki Tanaka
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: Japanese (Dolby Digital 1.0), Japanese (Dolby Digital 3.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: Criterion
  • DVD Release Date: January 23, 2007
  • Run Time: 96 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (250 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000K0YM0O
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,357 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Sanjuro: Remastered Edition (The Criterion Collection)" on IMDb

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 35-minute documentary on the making of Sanjuro, 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
  • Booklet featuring an essay by critic Michael Sragow and notes and statements from Kurosawa and his cast and crew

Editorial Reviews

Additional Features

The Criterion Collection's 2007 disc is a must-have for any serious cinephile. The film is presented with an all-new, fully restored high-definition digital transfer, representing (as in the case of Seven Samurai) a significant improvement over Criterion's previous DVD release. It features a full-length commentary by Kurosawa scholar Stephen Prince (with eloquent emphasis on camera movement and composition) in addition to a retrospective documentary culled from the priceless Japanese Toho Masterworks series Akira Kurosawa: It Is Wonderful to Create, featuring illuminating interviews with many of Kurosawa's closest collaborators. A theatrical trailer and behind-the-scenes photo gallery are also included, along with new-and-improved subtitles, insightful booklet essays, and rarely seen production notes by Kurosawa and members of his cast and crew. With this reissue, Criterion's previous release of Sanjuro should now be considered officially obsolete. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

Toshiro Mifune swaggers and snarls to brilliant comic effect in Akria Kurosawa's tightly paced, beautifully composed Sanjuro. In this sly companion piece to Yojimbo, jaded samurai Sanjuro helps an idealistic group of young warriors weed out their clan's e

Customer Reviews

The film is wonderfully paced, has nice twists, solid dialogue, great acting and an overall warmness in all aspects.
Morris's Codex
You do get the original Japanese track plus english subtitles and, of course, the picture at the Criterion standard (excellent).
S. DE SEVE
Lurking under the comic flourishes is an intelligent film with likable characters, solid writing, and plenty of action.
E. A Solinas

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 42 people found the following review helpful By Gary F. Taylor HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 6, 2003
Format: DVD
Although it lacks the scope of THE SEVEN SAMURAI, THRONE OF BLOOD, and other more widely known films by the celebrated Akira Kurosawa, the 1961 YOJIMBO (also known as BODYGUARD) is one of the most important films of the second half of the 20th Century--and a film that was deeply influenced by American film. Even so, YOJIMBO stands on its own merits: it's a magnificent piece of cinema that will fascinate even those who normally turn up their noses at "movies with subtitles."

In theory, the film is based on the 1929 Dashiell Hammett novel RED HARVEST--but transports the basic story to a period in Japan when the Samurai class has fallen on hard times and must seek employment as common body guards. Sanjuro Kuwabatake (brilliantly played by Toshiro Mifune, who appeared in several Kurosawa films) is such a one, a scruffy looking and aging warrior who finds himself caught between warring factions of a Japanese village and responds by playing the two against each other.

One of the film's greatest assets is its visual style. Kurosawa is very clearly influenced by the look of the American western here, and most particularly so, in my opinion, by HIGH NOON. Consequently, YOJIMBO leaps the cultural divide with considerable ease--but Kurosawa uses the images of empty streets and the lone warrior to considerably different effect, presenting him as a dangerous figure who emerges from the dust and the wind to rip wide his foes. But the film does not rely on visual style alone: there is plenty of hard substance here, too. The plot is tightly wound, action-intensive, and laced with a dry and very black humor, and the cast is superlative throughout.
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74 of 85 people found the following review helpful By JediFonger on January 12, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Thank you so much Criterion for releasing all of their licensed Akira Kurosawa films in a single boxset! This is one epic collection in every sense of the word!

Most arm-chair critics do not take into account or acknowledge companies like Criterion need to pay royalties for the right to release films! And the royalty often come with an expiration date. An example of this is Kurosawa's 1985 film RAN was released on DVD and was scheduled to be released on Blu-ray only to have the rights expired. It was reverted back to Studio Canal, who eventually decided to release their own Blu-ray/DVD instead (at the time of this writing). Royalties/licenses are primary reasons why the following 5 titles are missing from this collection to make it COMPLETE:

The Quiet Duel
Dersu Uzala
Ran
Dreams
Rhapsody in August

I'm not an industry insider nor do I work for Criterion so I do not know the business decisions those 5 films aren't included in this collection. Remember, Criterion is business first, film purist second. My guess is it is not for the lack of trying to obtain the rights to release those 5 in this boxset. It's possible that either the license/copyright owners want too much money or there might not have been a great film print to begin with and it would take even longer for a set like this to be released! It's not like Criterion is sitting around with nothing to do =P. So, it isn't really Criterion's fault for not including every single film Akira Kurosawa has directed! This boxset is already monumental for the fact that Criterion took the time to do it in the first place! For that, I am grateful!
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29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Michael Schulze on February 25, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
As there is so much written about this Box I want to share my opinion on it too !
First of all you already know that these DVDs are plain film,no extras!For a price around 300 dollars that's absolutely unacceptable,even though the films themself are pure masterpieces!
So my 5 Star-Rating only concerns the films,but not this poor release.
But even if the films don't contain any bonusmaterial,why are they also don't feature optional soundtrack-versions like a few of the individual Criterion-Releases have?
For instance the individual Release of "Rashomon" (Spine No. 138)also contains an optional english dubbed soundtrack.
The individual Criterion-releases of "The Hidden Fortress" (Spine No.116) , "Yojimbo" (Spine No.52) and "Sanjuro" (Spine No.53) also contain an optional 3.0 Soundtrack,while the releases in this box are only monaural. The individual release of "Throne of Blood" (Spine No. 190) contains 2 different subtitles to choose. One from japanese film translator Linda Hoaglund,the other from Donald Richie.The DVD in this box only features the Donald-Richie-Subtitles.
And of course the film "Dodes'ka-den".....While in 1995 released on Criterion-Laserdisc (LD 291)with a 1,66/1 format,the later DVD-Release was cut to a 1,33/1 format (The individual release (Spine No. 465) as well as the DVD in this box)!
And don't let anyone fool you by telling you how good the quality of the picture and sound are.The 4 early films that are released here for the first time ("Sanjiro Sugata part 1 and part 2","The Most Beautiful" and "Those who Tread on the Tigers Tail")have a poor picture and sound quality.In fact even someone who's able understanding the japanese language can't watch the films "Sanjiro Sugata Part 1 and 2" without subtitles.
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