June 06, 2019

Ramen westerns

The Japanese and Italian filmmakers of the 60's were watching each other closely.  Here are two scenes for your perusal:

Zatoichi on the Road (1963)

Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)

The most extreme evolution of this that I have seen so far is Bloody Shuriken (1965), which I think might as well be rescored with the theme from Bonanza.  It makes no sense in any Japanese historical context, but all the sense of the world if you imagine that everyone in Dodge City decided to dress funny and speak Japanese:

Showdown at the Oke Corral

The movie is not a good use of time.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.

One additional note - that one girl is the estimable Masumi Harukawa, who looks great, breaks every rule, and seems to have had a bit of a cult following.  YMMV, but I like her approach.

Unholy Desire aka Intentions of Murder (1964)


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