Synopsis by Jonathan Crow
In honor of the 100th anniversary of the invention of film, Toho studios produced this remake of Chushingura, a paean of feudal devotion and one of the most retold tales in all of Japanese cinema. Legendary filmmaker Kon Ichikawa reworks this old chestnut by trying find a psychological truth in the characters and the historical truth of the time period. Set in the spring of 1704, Kuranosuke Oishi (Ken Takakura) is the retainer of lord Naganori Asano. While in far-off Edo (pre-modern Tokyo), Asano drew his sword against Lord Kira. Contrary to usual practice, Asano was beheaded for his indiscretion while Kira -- who is well connected with the powerful Uesugi clan and the Shogun himself -- is spared. Sensing that justice has not been served, Oishi starts to organize the other retainers and plot revenge -- even though such an act means certain death for all involved. The chief retainer for Uesugi named Matashiro Irobe (Kiichi Nakai) tries to buy off as many of Asano's former samurais as possible.
bad-guy, clan, execution, family-member, good-guy, revenge, war