Skip to content

Directed by Akira Kurosawa

Japan 1961 110 mins. In Japanese

Set at the end of the Tokugawa era, YOJIMBO follows the rōnin Sanjuro (Toshirô Mifune) who, while wandering the countryside, happens upon a village over which two clans wage war. Sensing an opportunity, the rōnin wiles his way into the conflict with the goal of killing both sides and extorting what he can from the clans in the process. But as he becomes more involved in the scheme and with the helpless townspeople, the brash Unosuke (Tatsuya Nakadai), brother of one of the clan’s bodyguards, comes to town armed with a pistol—the first ever seen in the village. For his role as the masterless samurai confronted with the realities of modernization and the waning of his breed, Mifune won the Best Actor Award at the 1961 Venice Film Festival.

Genres: Drama, Thriller

Appears in: Samurai Cinema

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.