Director: Akira Kurosawa
Writers: Akira Kurosawa & Ryuzo Kikushima, from a story by Akira Kurosawa
Stars: Toshiro Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Yoko Tsukasa, Isuzu Yamada, Daisuke Kato, Seizaburo Kawazu
A nameless ronin arrives at a village where two criminal factions are battling for supremacy while the peasants cower in fright.
"In this town, I'll make a lot of money for killing," he muses, "and there are a lot of people who need to be killed."
Establishing a reputation as an expert fighter early on, he soon has both factions bidding for his services and takes advantage of the chaotic situation to inflict damage on both of them while surreptitiously aiding the peasants.
Toshiro Mifune excels as a rogue who seems amoral on the surface, and director Akira Kurosawa demonstrates the filmmaking skill that made him a legend.