The Sword of Doom - Criterion Collection (1966) Japan
The Sword of Doom - Criterion Collection Image Cover
Additional Images
Director:Kihachi Okamoto
Producer:Sanezumi Fujimoto
Writer:Shinobu Hashimoto
Rating:4.0 (81 votes)
Date Added:2010-05-16
Genre:Action & Adventure
Picture Format:Widescreen
Aspect Ratio:2.35:1
Sound:Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono
Features:Black and White, Special Edition
Kihachi Okamoto  ...  (Director)
Shinobu Hashimoto  ...  (Writer)
Tatsuya Nakadai  ...  
Yûzô Kayama  ...  
Michiyo Aratama  ...  
Yôko Naitô  ...  
Tadao Nakamaru  ...  
Hiroshi Murai  ...  Cinematographer
Yoshitami Kuroiwa  ...  Editor
Tags: Buddhism drama

Summary: Boasting some of the most impressive swordplay in the history of samurai epics, "Sword of Doom" is a visceral masterpiece of violent style and powerful substance. Illustrating the timeless adage that "an evil soul wields an evil sword," this highly stylized classic is driven by the fierce and fearsome performance of Tatsuya Nakadai as Ryunosuke, a sociopathic samurai whose soul--and sword--are vicious instruments of evil. Having mastered a highly unconventional style of fencing, Ryunosuke welcomes an exhibition match at a fencing school run by master swordsman Shimada (Toshirô Mifune, in a small but pivotal role), where he kills his opponent after promising not to. Flagrantly violating all codes of honor, Ryunosuke eventually finds himself challenged from all sides; even his own henchmen rally against him, and director Kihachi Okamoto stages confrontations that are as beautiful as they are graphically violent. As Ryunosuke descends into pure, bloodthirsty insanity, "Sword of Doom" ends with a freeze-frame that's unforgettably intense. "--Jeff Shannon"