Clips from perhaps one of the greatest works of art of all time, Seven Samurai, set to traditional Japanese drums.

If you haven’t seen this movie, you must find time. The Magnificent Seven is essentially a western remake of this Japanese classic. There are even little snippets of it in the Star Wars films. (George Lucas was heavily influenced by Seven Samurai director Akira Kurosawa. The original three Star Wars films draw heavily on Kurasawa’s style and material, from wipe transitions to characters and story elements – most notably from The Hidden Fortress. I’ve seen most of his films that are available in the West, and they’re all quite good.)

The film also serves as a good introduction to legendary Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune, who was rumored to be under consideration for the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi by George Lucas when casting the first Star Wars film. Mifune’s gruff, loner samurai type was adopted by Clint Eastwood in his spaghetti westerns, most notably A Fistful of Dollars, a remake of the Kurosawa/Mifune collaboration Yojimbo.

Bottom line: if you haven’t seen this film, I’m not sure you can call yourself “educated”.

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