The Shogun Collection
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Top Customer Reviews
The films are not all of the same genre. Of the four films, two of them (Shogun's Ninja and Shogun's Shadow) fall under the matial arts category, and are reminiscent of "Lone Wolf and Cub" and "Shadow Hunters". The other two, "Shogun's Samurai" and "Sword of Vengence" are historical dramas more in the vein of "The Seven Samurai" and "Chusingura". In fact, "Sword of Vengence" is a variation of the same story as "Chusingura", another retelling of the 47 ronin. The latter two fims are more plot driven and feature far less action. This is just fine by me, as I enjoy both types of samurai film.
Another thing you should know is that Sonny Chiba is not actually the star of any of these films. He plays a supporting role in all of them. So die hard Sonny Chiba fans may be disappointed.
All and all, this is an excellent purchase for fans of Japanese cinema, especially considering the price. Most Japanese films cost a premium (check out the price being asked for any Kurosawa or Lone Wolf and Cub film), so to get four excellent films for the price of one is a steal.
I don't know anything about the distribution company that sells this, and frankly I don't care. I can tell you that the sound and picture quality of all of these films is excellent. There are absolutely no issues there at all. There is an issue with the misleading marketing of these as "Sonny Chiba films" which I've already discussed, and for that this collection should be deducted one, maybe even two stars, but I'm going to go ahead and award it five to offset the unjustified one-star review.
Two of the movies are great historical epic Samurai films from one of Japan's all-time great directors, Kinji Fukasaku. These movies are Shogun's Samurai, and Swords of Vengeance. Expertly directed, very well written, and brought to life by some fantastic actors, both of these movies belong in every Samurai movie fan's collection.
The other two movies are cheesy (by design) 80's action flicks where Samurais and Ninjas can perform superhuman acts (leap tall buildings in a single bound type stuff). They're passable as entertainment as long as you turn your brain off (although Shogun's Shadow does have it's moments - there is the basis of a good script, it just gets overpowered by too much cheese).
The only thing that all four of the movies have in common are supporting roles for Sonny Chiba - who is particularly good in Shogun's Samurai!
The transfers for ALL FOUR of these movies are brilliant! Beautiful anamorphic widescreen, original Japanese language soundtrack with English subtitles - these are some great DVD's! BCI Eclipse has been licensing many different movies and TV series recently, and paying attention to quality. Their licensing deal here with Adness continues that trend. They've come a long way from the "Public Domain" specialists that they used to be (although they still do that as well).
In the end, this set is worth buying for the two Kinji Fukasaku films alone - you can watch the others or, as some have done, sell them on ebay.
The two strongest movies are Swords of Vengeance and Shogun's Samurai, which not surprisingly, were directed by Kinji Fukasaku, and starred Kinnosuke Yorozuya.
The strongest movie of this set is Swords of Vengeance: Fall of Ako Castle (Ako-Jo Danzetsu). It is a re-telling of the tale of the 47 Ronin. Although this version is less detailed than other versions, it hits the highlights and essence of the story. It's well told, well acted, and, the one major deviation from other versions: this one has a great action packed ending.
Shogun's Samurai: The Yagyu Clan Conspiracy is a detailed movie you need to really pay attention to follow what's going on, and it's also a good story, with lots of intrigue. It's an all around good movie, but what makes this movie a treat is you get to see Sonny Chiba portray Yagyu Jubei.
Shogun's Shadow: Attack! Shogun Iemitsu is Crazy (Shogun Iemitsu no rasi-Gekitotsuo) is a long hyped-up version of a typical Sonny Chiba televison show from the 1970's and 1980's. If you've never seen Kage No Gundan, or the Yagyu television series, this is kind of what it was like, but 26 episodes packed into 2 hours.
Shogun's Ninja (Ninja Bugeicho Momochi Sandayu) is an okay movie, typical Japanese period piece revenge film, and looks like it was a showcase for Hiroyuki Sanada, action star. I don't think he showed his capabilities in this movie, but I think he matured into one of the best actors in Japan, and by the time he winds own his career, he will be acknowledged as one of the great dramatic actors of Japanese cinema.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've seen three out of the four in this collection and I must say it has been worth it. The three so far, "Shogun's Shadow," "Swords of Vengeance," and "Shogun's Samurai," are all... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Elio Lopez
An excellent set of movies staring Sonny Chiba in Samurai roles that properly display his skill with a sword and acting ability.Published on December 15, 2013 by Dennis Dillon
God I get tried if writing reviews, I just want to buy a product and go on with my life
It's exciting from beginning to end. The costuming and sets are brilliant, the acting makes be believe, and the violence is believable out of necessity but not unnecessarily gory. Read morePublished on April 29, 2011 by Jonathan J. Downard
This item was not what I thought I was getting, however I like it allot and happy to have it in my collection. ThanksPublished on August 20, 2010 by C. Goodwin
I'm a new Chiba fan and I only want to buy box sets since it's cheaper and easier that way. I'm happy with this set even though Chiba's not the star. Read morePublished on June 25, 2007 by ZZrider
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|The Shogun Collection PRODUCT DETAILS FAILS to LIST MOVIES !!!||
Could it be the old 70's television series?
Sep 12, 2006 by William D. Middleton | See all 3 posts