Tenchu!


2h 20m 1970

Brief Synopsis

Izo Okada, a masterless samurai of less than ronin rank, desperately seeks a way out of his financial straits. He allies himself with the Tosa clan under the ruthless leader Takechi and imagines that he has come up in the world. But Takechi makes of Izo a killer and a puppet, and only when it appears too late does Izo realize how far he has fallen.

Film Details

Also Known As
Hitokiri
Release Date
Jan 1970
Premiere Information
Los Angeles showing: Feb 1970
Production Company
Fuji Telecasting Co.; Katsu Productions
Distribution Company
Daiei Motion Picture Co.
Country
Japan

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 20m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Eastmancolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Synopsis

In 1862 the Tokugawa Shogunate, under both domestic and foreign pressures, concludes treaties with the United States, Great Britain, Russia, and the Netherlands, which open Japan to foreign trade and visitors. Supporters of the Emperor see this event as a signal for them to overthrow the Shogunate and restore the Emperor to the throne. Hampeita Takechi, leader of the Tosa clan, one of the three patriotic clans working against the Shogunate, is a ruthless leader who will stop at nothing to secure his own power. To this end, he retains a killer, Izo Okada, who blindly follows his every order, to the point that he is arrested for over-zealousness in getting rid of his boss's rivals. In prison Izo reconsiders his devotion to Hampeita, and upon his release he confesses all to the authorities in the hope that justice will be served. So complete is Hampeita's power, however, that Izo is placed in an untenable position and he commits hara-kiri.

Film Details

Also Known As
Hitokiri
Release Date
Jan 1970
Premiere Information
Los Angeles showing: Feb 1970
Production Company
Fuji Telecasting Co.; Katsu Productions
Distribution Company
Daiei Motion Picture Co.
Country
Japan

Technical Specs

Duration
2h 20m
Sound
Mono
Color
Color (Eastmancolor)
Theatrical Aspect Ratio
2.35 : 1

Quotes

Trivia

Notes

Released in Japan in August 1969 as Hitokiri.

Miscellaneous Notes

Shown in Los Angeles (American Cinematheque) as part of program "Days of Snow & Blood: The Films of Hideo Gosha" June 21 - July 13, 1996.

"Heaven's Punishment" was unavailable for public viewing for many years because of the graphic on-screen suicide of novelist/actor Yukio Mishima, which anticipated his own suicide a year later.