After watching Magnificent Seven, of course I was going to go back and watch the movie it was based on. Not to mention my Ma, gods rest her, LOVED Toshirô Mifune an Akira Kurosawa; so it’s way passed time I checked this movie off my list.
I tried not to compare it too much but there were some obvious differences. This movie is longer, the town has more trouble finding help, the villagers are more desperate and therefore more likely to be less perfect and innocent, the samurai themselves aren’t so noble, and the battle itself goes on for days. Overall, it’s less polished, making it feel more realistic despite some of the really hammy way people died.
The 1960 movie had this Hollywood feeling to it; like it knew it was a movie so it was more of an adventure. This movie seemed much more depressing to me. War is awful and killing sucks, the end. More people die and it ends on this low, regretful note. I don’t see this as a bad thing at all but I needed some humor after this to lift my spirits.
Also to note, Kyuzo is every badass samurai manga character rolled into one awesome package. If we could get some movies about him, I would watch it in a heartbeat.
Overall, I can see why I didn’t want to sit and watch this as a kid with Ma (although I regret that now) because I think a kid would get bored or not get a lot of what the characters are talking about. But now? Now, it is a beautiful example of movie making done right. Absolutely stellar.