Shichinin No Samurai Quiz

<span class="author-by">by</span> Samantha <span class="author-surname">Stratton</span>

by Samantha Stratton

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Respond to these rapid questions in our Shichinin No Samurai quiz and we will tell you which Shichinin No Samurai character you are. Play it now.

The 1954 film “Seven Samurai” by Akira Kurosawa is not only a masterpiece in and of itself, but also the starting point of a category that would last the rest of the century. According to reviewer Michael Jeck, this was the first movie where a team is put together to carry out a mission, an idea that went on to inspire “The Magnificent Seven,” its Hollywood remake, “The Guns of Navarone,” “The Dirty Dozen,” and numerous other later war, heist, and caper films. Since Kurosawa’s samurai adventure “Yojimbo” (1960) was remade as “A Fistful of Dollars” and essentially created the spaghetti Western, and since this movie and Kurosawa’s “The Hidden Fortress” inspired George Lucas’ “Star Wars” series, it could be argued that this greatest of filmmakers gave employment to action heroes for the next 50 years, just as a fallout from his primary purpose.

Making a samurai film with roots in traditional Japanese culture but a message supporting a flexible humanism as opposed to rigid customs was the goal. One of the main themes of “Seven Samurai” is that the villagers who hire the samurai are from various castes, and they must never mix. In fact, it turns out that these peasants had once been hostile toward samurai; one of them still harbors hysterical fears that one of them will abduct his daughter. However, since the bandits pose a larger threat, the samurai are hired, valued, and despised in roughly equal amounts.

Why do they accept the position? Why do they jeopardize their lives every day for a handful of rice? Because samurais are samurai by temperament and by job. Both parties are bound by the roles placed on them by society, and in To the Distant Observer, his study of Japanese films, Noel Burch observes: “masochistic perseverance in the fulfillment of complex social obligations is a basic cultural trait of Japan.” Samurai don’t give up, and neither do the bandits, who carry on with their series of raids despite the fact that it is obvious the village is well-defended, that they are suffering significant losses, and that there must be undefended communities nearby. They play their parts as assigned, much like the characters in a Greek tragedy.

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Two of the movie’s key subplots center on societal traditionalism insurrection. Toshiro Mifune portrays the spirited warrior Kikuchiyo as a boisterous showoff. Kikuchiyo is a caste-jumper who was not born a samurai. Additionally, a rural girl and samurai named Katsushiro (Isao Kimura) are involved in an illicit relationship. (ironically, the very daughter whose father was so worried). When they are discovered together on the eve of the final battle, there are arguments in the village to “understand the young people,” and an appeal to romance—an appeal made for modern audiences and unlikely to have had much sway in the 1600s, when the movie is set. They love each other, but a farmer’s daughter cannot dream of marrying a ronin.
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The great Japanese filmmaker Kurosawa was regarded as being the most Western. (too Western, some of his Japanese critics sniffed). The majority of his earlier films, according to Jeck, subscribed to the Japanese values of teamwork, fitting in, going along, and conforming. “Seven Samurai” marks a significant shift in his body of work. His later movies are all about outcasts, rebels, and those who don’t blend in. The pivotal moment is depicted in his best film, “Ikiru” (1952), in which a worker who spends his days performing mindless tasks rotely makes the decision to break free and accomplish at least one worthwhile goal as he nears death.

Takashi Shimura, who astonishingly also portrays Kambei, the head of the seven samurai, portrayed that bureaucrat. In the 1952 photograph, he appeared elderly and withered; in this one, he appeared tough and worn. In every movie he made for 18 years, Kurosawa used Shimura, Mifune, or frequently both of them, demonstrating his loyalty to his lifelong partners.

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Both performers are crucial to “Seven Samurai”. ye.commastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmastmas, and. Did this scene start the long-standing action movie custom of opening scenes where the hero enters a perilous situation unrelated to the main plot? He spends the remainder of the film idly rubbing his bristling cranium whenever he is perplexed. We follow the battles in part because he (and Kurosawa) lay them out for us, take us through the village’s defenses, and keep track as the 40 bandits are eliminated one by one. He is a composed, wise leader and a good strategist. Kikuchiyo, played by Mifune, is an overcompensator. His sword is longer than anyone else’s when he comes, and he struts around with it slung over his shoulder like a rifleman. He is bold, impulsive, and a braggart who rapidly gathers a fan base of neighborhood kids who follow him around. Despite performing some challenging jumps and maneuvers in the film—Mifune was an excellent athlete in real life—his character is depicted as a hopeless rider. (Kikuchiyo wouldn’t have had the chance to learn to cycle as a youngster if he had been the son of a farmer.) The failure of Kikuchiyo to control a wild local horse is one running joke; there is a funny scene where the horse and rider vanish behind a barrier together and then reappear separately.
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The film is lengthy (207 minutes, including an intermission), but despite this, it moves swiftly due to the clear storytelling, the abundance of clearly defined characters, and the thrilling scope of the action sequences. Kurosawa was the best action photographer there ever was. He frequently creates shots in which the camera follows the rush and flow of an action rather than breaking it up into individual shots. One of his distinctive trademarks is the use of human tides, sweeping down from higher to lower locations. Perhaps Orson Welles, who in “Falstaff” hides a lack of extras by burying the camera in a Kurosawian tangle of horses, legs, and swords, observed his use of closeups in some of the later combat scenes.

Repeated viewings of “Seven Samurai” show visual patterns. Take into account the irony in two scenes that bookend the first bandit fight, for instance. In the first, the locals hear the approaching bandits and flee in fear. The ronin sprint from one group to the next (the villagers always run in groups, not individually) to herd them into cover as Kambei commands his samurai to calm and contain them. A wounded bandit later falls in the village center after the bandits have been driven back, and the villagers now advance with delayed courage to kill him. This time, the samurai move quickly to shove them aside. The entire film contains sequences that are mirror images of one another.

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Additionally, a natural sense of harmony exists. Kurosawa constantly employs deep focus to track simultaneous actions in the foreground, middle and background. He frequently uses obstacles to define boundaries. Take a look at a scene in which the samurai are seen in the center peering out through a building’s slats and across a barren field to the sight of the bandits peering in through a barrier that has been set up to keep them out. In order to compare two things, Kurosawa’s moving camera frequently avoids cuts. For example, he may start with a closeup of a character speaking dialogue, pan across a room or a clearing, and then finish on a closeup of a different character who is the subject of the dialogue.
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The movie “Seven Samurai” features a lot of character deaths, but the focus is not on bloodshed or combat. It is more about duty and social duties. At the conclusion, four of the seven samurai are dead, but there are no protests because that is the fate of the samurai. Once the bandits are gone, the villagers do not want the samurai around because they pose a danger to peace. That is how civilization operates. The samurai who fell in love with the local lady is prominently featured in the final shots’ composition. He is first pictured with his coworkers. followed by the female. Next, not with the samurai but somehow of them, in an undetermined location. Here, two film genres—the Western, which Kurosawa was well-versed in, and the samurai movie—are at conflict with one another. Should the knight approach the woman? In 1954, the Japanese public would have voted against it. The following 40 years were devoted to Kurosawa’s critique of the idea that each person should serve as society’s tool.

For more personality quizzes check this: One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest Quiz.

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