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Lady Snowblood (1973)

Shurayukihime (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Drama, Thriller | 1 December 1973 (Japan)
A young girl is born and raised to be an instrument of revenge.

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Writers:

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Lady Snowblood is caught in the politics of early 20th century Japan.

Director: Toshiya Fujita
Stars: Meiko Kaji, Jûzô Itami, Kazuko Yoshiyuki
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

After being used and betrayed by the detective she had fallen in love with, young Matsu is sent to a female prison full of sadistic guards and disobedient prisoners.

Director: Shun'ya Itô
Stars: Meiko Kaji, Rie Yokoyama, Yayoi Watanabe
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

After spending a year in solitary confinement, Matsu escapes from prison with six more convicts, followed by the guards led by the vengeful warden who wants her dead at all costs.

Director: Shun'ya Itô
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

The story of a Ronin (i.e. a masterless samurai) who wanders the countryside of Japan with his small child, having various adventures.

Director: Kenji Misumi
Stars: Tomisaburô Wakayama, Fumio Watanabe, Gô Katô
Action | Adventure | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Trailed by a clan of female ninja, Ogami is paid to assassinate a clan traitor accompanied by three killers known as the Gods of Death.

Director: Kenji Misumi
Stars: Tomisaburô Wakayama, Kayo Matsuo, Minoru Ôki
Action | Drama | Horror
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The head of a yakuza gang is being trailed by a mysterious, vengeful blind woman.

Director: Teruo Ishii
Stars: Meiko Kaji, Hoki Tokuda, Makoto Satô
Action | Crime | Drama
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Five warriors challenge Ogami to duels. Each holds a part of information needed to complete the assassination of a mad clan leader.

Director: Kenji Misumi
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Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Matsu is sheltered by an incestuous prostitute on her run from the police, her ex-prison mate and a cop whose arm she hacked off.

Director: Shun'ya Itô
Stars: Meiko Kaji, Mikio Narita, Reisen Ri
Action | Drama
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Ogami Itto volunteers to be tortured by the yakuza to save a prostitute and is hired by their leader to kill an evil chamberlain.

Director: Kenji Misumi
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Hausu (1977)
Comedy | Horror
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A schoolgirl and six of her classmates travel to her aunt's country home, which tries to devour the girls in bizarre ways.

Director: Nobuhiko Ôbayashi
Stars: Kimiko Ikegami, Miki Jinbo, Kumiko Ohba
Action | Thriller
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Ogami is hired to kill a tattooed female assassin. Gunbei Yagyu, an enemy samurai, happens upon Ogami's son, and sees his chance for revenge.

Director: Buichi Saitô
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Action | Adventure | Drama
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In the sixth and final film of the Lone Wolf and Cub series, the final conflict between Ogami Itto and the Yagyu clan is carried out.

Director: Yoshiyuki Kuroda
Stars: Tomisaburô Wakayama, Akihiro Tomikawa, Junko Hitomi
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Toshio Kurosawa ...
Masaaki Daimon ...
Miyoko Akaza ...
Shinichi Uchida ...
Takeo Chii ...
Noboru Nakaya ...
Yoshiko Nakada ...
...
Kaoru Kusuda ...
Otora Mikazuki
Sanae Nakahara ...
Hôsei Komatsu ...
Makoto Matsuzaki ...
Daikashi
Hiroshi Hasegawa ...
Daihachi Kachime
Takehiko Ono ...
(as Susumu Kuroki)
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Storyline

Yuki's family is nearly wiped out before she is born due to the machinations of a band of criminals. These criminals kidnap and brutalize her mother but leave her alive. Later her mother ends up in prison with only revenge to keep her alive. She creates an instrument for this revenge by purposefully getting pregnant. Though she dies in childbirth, she makes sure that the child will be raised as an assassin to kill the criminals who destroyed her family. Young Yuki never knows the love of a family but only killing and revenge. Written by Fred Cabral <ftcabral@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Drama | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Release Date:

1 December 1973 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Lady Snowblood  »

Company Credits

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Yuki Kashima was specifically written for Meiko Kaji to play. See more »

Goofs

This is set in the 19th century but, at the party in the final act, the Pakistani flag is amongst those on display. Pakistan only became an independent state in 1947. The flag of Australia is also present, although the Australian flag was first flown in 1901. See more »

Quotes

Narrator: People say you can't wash away the mud of this world with pure white snow. You need asura snow - stained fiery red.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Ban the Sadist Videos! Part 2 (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

Shura no Hana
Sung by Meiko Kaji
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Stylish saga of a vengeance-seeking femme fatale
23 March 2013 | by See all my reviews

LADY SNOWBLOOD is widely known as one of the main inspirations behind Tarantino's KILL BILL, featuring the same plot (a woman tracks down the members of a gang, one by one, for the purpose of revenge) and stylistic flourishes (not least the separation into chapters). It's another manga adaptation along the same lines as the LONE WOLF & CUB saga, and while it may not be quite as exhilarating as those films, it comes close at times.

The story is mannered and carefully paced, so those looking for an action-packed thrill-ride along the lines of modern cinema might be disappointed. It's fairly slow but never less than beautiful, with precise attention paid to costumes and scenery, which makes for a wonderfully cinematic experience. As expected, there are also the requisite fight scenes containing the usual blood-spurting mayhem that Japanese samurai cinema is known for.

Okay, so the story is slight, but many scenes resonate with real power, and my favourite bit sees Snowblood cornering one victim on the beach while he pleads for his life. Meiko Kaji's turn as the resourceful, determined heroine is powerful indeed, and it's just a shame that some sub-plots, such as the inclusion of an investigative journalist who teams up with the protagonist, don't really add up to much. In addition, the action scenes, while good, lack the kind of visceral power and innovative style that made LONE WOLF & CUB so great. My overall conclusion is that LADY SNOWBLOOD is entertaining enough in itself but no classic.


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