Kill! | Chicago Reader

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One of the most striking examples of the vibrant cross-pollination that existed between samurai films and westerns of the 60s and 70s, this darkly comic 1968 offering directed by Kihachi Okamoto (Samurai Assassin, Sword of Doom) borrows liberally from Sergio Leone (whose Fistful of Dollars was in fact a remake of Akira Kurosawa's Yojimbo). Masaru Sato's Ennio Morricone-inspired score sets the tone, and the estimable Tatsuya Nakadai stars as a derelict yakuza drifter who was once a great warrior. After arriving in a squalid ghost town he befriends an impoverished farmer (Etsushi Takahashi), and they quickly become enmeshed in a bloody battle between peasant villagers and a renegade faction of samurai. In Japanese with subtitles. 114 min.

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