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Kurosawa: The Samurai Collection [4 Blu-ray Disc Set]

7 customer reviews

Price: £39.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Kurosawa: The Samurai Collection [4 Blu-ray Disc Set] + Kagemusha [Blu-ray] [1980] [Region Free] + Ran [Blu-ray]
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Product details

  • Actors: Takashi Shimura, Toshirô Mifune, Yoshio Inaba, Seiji Miyaguchi, Minoru Chiaki
  • Directors: Akira Kurosawa
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region B/2 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Classification: 12
  • Studio: Bfi
  • DVD Release Date: 1 Sept. 2014
  • Run Time: 668 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00LA1ZV52
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,500 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Product Description

KUROSAWA: THE SAMURAI COLLECTION (4-DISC BLU-RAY BOX SET)

Akira Kurosawa is one of the world's greatest filmmakers. His films have been acclaimed by critics the world over, and his celebrated samurai epics featuring international star Toshirô Mifune have inspired filmmakers as diverse as Steven Spielberg and Sergio Leone, and inspired countless films, including The Magnificent Seven. This indispensable Blu-ray collection contains digitally remastered High Definition presentations of five of Kurosawa's greatest films, are accompanied with extra features including interviews with directors George Lucas and Alex Cox, feature-length audio commentaries and original theatrical trailers.

Contents

  1. SEVEN SAMURAI
    When the residents of a small Japanese village seek protection they hire seven unemployed 'ronin' (masterless samurai). Paid only in handfuls of rice, the samurai remain distant from the villagers, knowing that their assignment may prove fatal. Unanimously hailed as one of cinema's greatest masterpieces, Seven Samurai has inspired countless films, including The Magnificent Seven.
    Japan | 1954 | 207 minutes | Japanese language, with optional English subtitles | Original aspect ratio 1.33:1
  2. THRONE OF BLOOD
    In this brilliant re-imagining of Shakespeare's Macbeth Toshirô Mifune plays a samurai fated to betray his friend and master in exchange for the prestige of nobility. Kurosawa's bloody tale is a triumph of economic style, and the climactic battle scene is full of remarkable, and brutal, imagery.
    Japan | 1957 | 108 minutes | Japanese language with optional English subtitles | Original aspect ratio 1.33:1
  3. THE HIDDEN FORTRESS
    In this classic collaboration between Kurosawa and star Mifune, a warrior and a princess try against all odds to return to their homeland with their fortune. Acknowledged by George Lucas as the inspiration for Star Wars, The Hidden Fortress combines an epic tale of struggle and honour with modern comic sensibilities to masterful effect
    Japan | 1958 | 144 minutes | Japanese language, with optional English subtitles | Original aspect ratio 2.35:1
  4. YOJIMBO
    A drifting samurai for hire plays both ends against the middle with two warring factions, surviving on his wits and his ability to outrun his own bad luck. Eventually the samurai seeks to eliminate both sides for his own gain and to define his own sense of honour. Yojimbo provided inspiration for A Fistful of Dollars.
    Japan | 1961 | 110 minutes | Japanese language, with optional English subtitles | Original aspect ratio 2.35:1
  5. SANJURO
    After the success of Yojimbo, Kurosawa teamed up once again with Mifune one year later to make this comedy of manners. The film, which follows a man fighting corruption in local government, offers a twist on the classic Samurai tale by gently, but perfectly parodying the conventions of the Japanese period action movie tradition.
    Japan | 1962 | 99 minutes | Japanese language, with optional English subtitles | Original aspect 2.35:1

Running times are to be confirmed

Special features

  • All films presented in High Definition
  • Original theatrical trailers
  • The Art of Akira Kurosawa (2013, 49 mins): Asian-cinema expert Tony Rayns discusses Kurosawa's career and influence
  • Interview with filmmaker George Lucas (2001, 8 mins)
  • Interview with filmmaker Alex Cox (2003, 9 mins)
  • Introduction to Sanjuro by Alex Cox (2003, 5 mins)
  • Full-length audio commentary on Throne of Blood by Japanese-film expert Michael Jeck
  • Full-length audio commentary on Yojimbo by film critic Philip Kemp

Review

'The pictorial shakespeare of our time' --Steven Spielberg

'His influence on filmmakers throughout the entire world is so profound' --Martin Scorsese

'I have learned more from him than from almost any other fimmaker on the face of the earth' --Steven Spielberg

'His influence on filmmakers throughout the entire world is so profound' --Martin Scorsese

'I have learned more from him than from almost any other fimmaker on the face of the earth' --Steven Spielberg

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By P Bortowski on 17 Jan. 2015
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I will get straight to the point. There are no subtitles to translate the songs/singing which are contained in some scenes in The Hidden Fortress and Throne of Blood. Where as this is absolutely a minor niggle, it is still a niggle. So, for example, the old "womans" song in cobweb forest in Throne of Blood has no subtitles. The songs themselves do add to the overall plot somewhat, but not majorly so, and are dialogue in their own right. It would simply be nice to know what is being sung, basically. What's baffling is that the DVD version of this exact same box set released by BFI contains the according subtitles for these song scenes, but here in this Blu-Ray version they are completely absent for some reason. I'm going to have to assume a different subtitle track has been used in this version of which its creator has decided that translating the songs is unnecessary, unfortunately.

Granted, and as I said earlier, this is but a minor niggle. I will add that I wouldn't allow this from preventing you from purchasing this still great set. I'm simply establishing this small issue for your benefit. The more you know I suppose.

The films themselves are still of their original excellence and now look and sound even greater via some truly beautiful HD presentation. A must-buy at the end of the day, for any Kurosawa fan or serious film buff.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Mark A. Streets on 7 Oct. 2014
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The transfers are great, and I would normally give this 5 stars, however, the packaging is very cheap and nasty and won't stand the test of time, and I really don't like that Sanjuro and Yojimbo are on the same disc, which, for the price is somewhat unacceptable. BFI you have let yourselves down.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Paul M on 1 Sept. 2014
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Love having these films on Blu-Ray (especially Throne of Blood), but I dislike packaging which means one disc is on top of another one (even if only partially), so I'll dock one star for that. There are only four discs in the set, so I don't see why it was necessary. It's a shame Rashomon wasn't included as well (I suppose it's not a samurai film although set in a similar period), but apart from that, a great collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By steve on 17 Feb. 2015
What can i, or indeed anyone say about these movies that hasn't already been said a thousand times over. They are as spellbinding now as i imagine they were at the time of their release, and the new blu ray formatting does them all the justice they deserve. I could sit here and wax lyrical about Kurosawa and Mifune all day long, as they and all those contributing to these movies are faultless in every respect. I do however have one issue with this nifty little number though... the packaging.

Frankly, as many have said before me, it is flimsy and cheap and i doubt very much it will stand the test of time. To be honest i was disappointed. I'm an absolute diva for keeping my discs pristine and scuff free, but the internal layout and storage in this set scares me to the point of committing a brown trouser atrocity. I shall be transferring my discs to another set of cases at some point, something i was not planning to do and once again something that leaves me somewhat disappointed.

So to sum up... movies - beyond awesome. Packaging - meh!!!
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