Seven Samurai and a momentous year for Japanese cinema

Thanks to John Oleszkiewicz for recommending our film this time around – the wonderful Seven Samurai from director Akira Kurosawa. We were initially alarmed by the film’s weighty 207-minute running time, but I can safely say that I enjoyed every goddamn minute – and in fact I wanted to watch it again as soon as it finished. Great recommendation.

As we discuss in the podcast, 1954 was a pretty special year for Japanese cinema, with the release of both Seven Samurai and the influential Godzilla, both from the studios of Toho. The two couldn’t be more different, but both went on to receive numerous remakes and had a huge impact on popular culture. Yet just four years earlier, neither film could have been made under the strict censorship rules of the American occupation force in Japan.

The podcast is mostly spoiler-free, but we do spend the last couple of minutes talking about the ending – listen out for the awooga warning if you want to avoid spoilers.

If our review has piqued your interest in the film, you can buy the Seven Samurai DVD or Blu-ray from Amazon by clicking here (and we get a little bit of cash if you do – thanks in advance).

Anyway, without further ado, let us present our feature presentation:

Click here to download and listen on your MP3 player of choice:

101 Films Podcast 085 – Seven Samurai

We’d love to hear your own film recommendations – please get in touch at or leave a comment on the blog. Feel free to say nice things about us on iTunes!

Director:  Akira Kurosawa Year of release: 1954 Studio/Distributor: Toho Country: Japan

Published by Lewis Packwood

The first game that Lewis ever played was "Horace Goes Skiing" on the ZX Spectrum. Yes, he's that old.

2 thoughts on “Seven Samurai and a momentous year for Japanese cinema

  1. My recollection was that Toshiro Mifune had been told to act like a dog for Yojimbo.
    You mentioned The Magnificent Seven, but neglected the greatest incarnation of this story: The Three Amigos! Sometimes your El Guapo is the actual El Guapo.

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