Hiroshi Inagaki’s acclaimed Samurai Trilogy is based on the novel that has been called Japan’s Gone with the Wind. This sweeping saga of the legendary seventeenth-century samurai Musashi Miyamoto (powerfully portrayed by Toshiro Mifune) plays out against the turmoil of a devastating civil war. The Trilogy (whose first part won an Academy Award) follows Musashi’s odyssey from unruly youth to enlightened warrior. In the second and most violent installment, Duel at Ichijoji Temple, Musashi beats a samurai armed with a chain and sickle and is later set upon by eighty samurai disciples—orchestrated by the sinister Kojiro—while the two women who love him watch helplessly.
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