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still Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa, JP 1980)


Akira Kurosawa / JP, 1980 / 156 min.

Based on watercolour paintings Kurosawa had been working on for years, this visually stunning war epic marked the beginning of Kurosawa's international acclaim and his first war epic in colour. Kurosawa's dedication to authenticity made Kagemusha one of the most ambitious Japanese films of its time. 

poster Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa, JP 1980)

Journey into feudal Japan with Kurosawa's masterpiece Kagemusha. Set in the tumultuous Sengoku period, this epic tale follows a lowly thief who is chosen to impersonate a powerful warlord after his untimely demise. As tensions rise and battles loom, the kagemusha (shadow warrior) navigates the complexities of samurai politics, honour, and sacrifice. He must not only maintain the illusion of leadership but also confront the weight of responsibility and the consequences of deception.

Kurosawa's signature blend of vibrant visuals and profound themes come to life in this sweeping historical drama. The film's success marked a significant comeback for Kurosawa, who had faced career setbacks in the years leading up to its release. Winner of the Palme d'Or (1980) and produced by Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas.

The film will simultaneously be subtitled in Dutch and English.

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Scenes from this movie may cause fearThis movie contains scenes of violencePersons under 12 years must be accompanied by an adult


Akira Kurosawa

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156 min.







Part of

Eye Classics

Eye’s collection includes a wealth of classics. With the Eye Classics series, Eye brings film history even closer. Every week, we screen at least three classics from the collection under one recognisable name: Eye Classics.

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Why in Eye

Kagemusha's nuanced exploration of power, identity, and deception remains profoundly relevant today, reminding us of the perils of ambition and the enduring allure of leadership.

still Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa, JP 1980)
still Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa, JP 1980)
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