Sanjuro (1962) - full transcript

A group of idealistic young men, determined to clean up the corruption in their town, are aided by a scruffy, cynical samurai who does not at all fit their concept of a noble warrior.

A Toho/Kurosawa Production


© 1962 Toho Co., Ltd.

Produced by

Screenplay by


Photographed by

Art Director

Music by










Directed by

So he refused?

Count my uncle out.

I gave him our statement requesting a cleanup.

He said, "As Chamberlain,
I already know."

- Then why?
- So I asked: "Why overlook corruption while the lord is away?"

He smiled and said,
"Perhaps I'm behind it."

"You think I'm good-natured."

"People aren't what they seem."

"Be careful."

"The worst one is beyond your imagination."

- And he tore it.
- Tore it?

- He was unreasonable.
- Then?

I gave up on him.
I met the Superintendent.

- What did he say?
- He was cooperative.

At first he looked embarrassed,

but the story of my uncle shocked him.

He pondered – "Alright," he said, "I'll help you."

"I'll talk with your group."

"Gather them quickly."

That's what he said.
- He's great!

- Right!
- A powerful support for us. Not a good-natured scarecrow.


- An interesting story.
- Don't let him go!

Fool! If I wanted to run, why would I speak?

Why are you here?

Free room overnight.

By the way, overhearing has a merit.

They say outsiders can be good judges.


I say the Chamberlain is all right,

but the Superintendent is no good.

- Don't insult him!
- Take it easy.

I haven't seen them.

So I'm not cheated by their looks.

The Chamberlain is ugly, isn't he?

But from your story
I judge he's a great man.

He doesn't mind being called a fool.

But the Superintendent...

You mentioned his name with admiration.

That means he looks attractive.

But people aren't what they seem.

- Be careful.
- Shut up bum!

That's what the Chamberlain said.

He said more exactly:

"The worst one"

"is beyond your imagination."

That is, the Superintendent might be the worst one.

Be still and listen.

What's the Superintendent's job?

To keep his clan calm.

But he incited you to riot.

Don't you think it's odd?

And he told you to gather your men.

You're in danger.

If he's the "puppeteer," he'll kill you all.

Don't do as he says.
Watch out.

But we're going to see him here tonight.


I was right.


Not even a mouse can escape.

Stop being foolish.

Put yours swords away.
This is no game.

- Don't order us!
- Suit yourselves.

Die for the Superintendent.

But we're surrounded...

Leave it to me.

Superintendent Kikui sent us.

You're surrounded!
No resistance!

Be quiet!
What do you want?

What are you doing?

Don't intrude into my room!

Looking for trouble?

Watch out. You woke me up.
I'm cross.

Pull back!

He's not the man we want.

Besides, it'd take a long time to kill him.

You're strong.

If you want a job, visit me
at the Superintendent's place.

I'm Hanbei Muroto.

It's safe now.
Come out.

We don't know how to thank you.

Forget it.
Just give me some money.

I haven't eaten for days.
I need some sake and food.

I'll take just that.


But what will you do now?

We've learned a lesson.
We'll apologise

and follow my uncle's instructions.

You understand.
Good boys.

It won't do.

The Chamberlain's in danger now.

I'd arrest him if I were the Superintendent.

He sounded as if he knew the worst man.

- Where to?
- My uncle's.

To get caught?

They know you.
You have no chance.

- But it was my fault.
- Our fault.

- You did just as we planned.
- But if my uncle...

Stop saying "my uncle!"
We're all involved in this.

Live or die, the nine of us...

You can't take care of yourselves.

It's quiet.
Everything seems all right.

No. It's odd.
The shutters are still open.

Any fish in the pond?

Many big ones.


The Superintendent's men are in my uncle's room.

He's in trouble.

Don't be hasty.
Let's wait and see.

We can't move like this, like a centipede.

- Any place to hide?
- There's a barn ahead.

Let's go there.

- Koiso.
- Izaka.

- Stop crying.
- The Chamberlain... He's in trouble.

Calm down.
Tell me what happened.

The Superintendent brought a troop in the evening.

- We were eating...
- My uncle?

- Ten men took him away.
- Kidnapped? Why?

- He had guards.
- They had no chance to fight.

- They're locked up.
- My aunt?

- I don't know. She's confined too.
- Chicory?

I think she's with her mother.

- Guards?
- Fourteen or fifteen.

How could you escape?

The sentries wanted me to bring sake for them.

- Alone?
- A man followed me the first time.

But not now.
- Send her back.

Back to the guards.

They'd be more cautious

if they found she got away.

Better still, drown them with sake.
Get them drunk.

We can easily rescue the old woman and the girl.

I see.

Koiso, will you go back?

Yes, I will.

She's a samurai.

She's more reliable than you kids.

I appreciate your help, but watch your tongue.

"The old woman and the girl!"

Don't give us orders for everything we do.

You plan to save the lady,
but first the Chamberlain.

Do you know where he is?

Then we can't save him now.

What's the Superintendent going to do with him?

We must find that first.

The Superintendent must've
told her why he arrested him.

Don't you want to know?

Then split up.

Four of us including me will save the old woman.

The others find the Chamberlain.

We'll meet at a safe place.
Is there any?

We can't go far with the ladies.

- My house is near.
- No! It's next door to Kurofuji.

- Kurofuji?
- One of the traitors.

- Interesting! Good. Let's go there.
- No! You fool!

Can't you say "yes" once in a while?

They'll never think of searching their neighbours.

Three guards.

I'll knock one down, so you two will get him.

Don't kill him.

He may tell us where the Chamberlain is.

While I take care of the rest,

go in and rescue the women.

Then run to the barn.

Why the look?

You want to use yours swords?
Forget it.

Stupid friends are dangerous.

You might cut me in the back.

The guardhouse.
Your plan seems to have worked.


Too bad.
Change of guards.

I met him at the shrine.

He offered me a job.

- What's he to the Superintendent?
- A brain.

- Let's go now. He's alone.
- You blind?

Those three guards were cats.

He's a tiger, but he's alone.

- Why the racket?
- The guards are drunk.

So are you.

Wash your faces in the pond.

Do it!

I'll take a look.
Stand watch.

They arrested my uncle to
save evidence of his graft?

They said so?

I see.
Good excuse.

Who's that person?

It's hard to explain, but he's our friend.

- He saved our lives.
- Is that so? Thank you.

What's keeping those two?
It's dangerous here.

But I never ran so fast in my life.

Let me rest here, or I can't walk.

I've never been here.

The hay smells nice.
- I love this smell.

We came here often.
Didn't we?

I'll get the two.

- Why did you come here?
- It's so quiet here...

Lying on the hay like this...

With the scent around me...

I become drowsy.

Once I really fell asleep on his arm.

Bad manners.



It smells nice.

They were shoving his head
in the pond to make him talk.

But he wouldn't.

- He only spat water?
- He doesn't know.

Who'd talk?

- Ass! What'll we do?
- He saw us. Kill him.

You mustn't.

Was it you who killed the others guards?

I had to.
To save you.

I shouldn't say this after you saved us, but...

killing people is a bad habit.

You're too sharp.
That's your trouble.

You're like a drawn sword.

Sharp, naked without a sheath.

You cut well.

But good swords are kept in their sheathes.

What'll you do with him?

Come with us, will you?

You'll be safe.

Over the rear wall!

No, that way!

Guard the front!

- Hurry!
- It may be easy for you, but not for us.

- We can't. Can we, Mother?
- Hurry!

Use me as a footstool...

- No, it's rude.
- Go ahead!

- But...
- No buts. Hurry, before I'm forced to kill again!

- Hurry!
- Well then, excuse me.

Don't let Kurofuji's men see us.

- I'm hungry. Feed me.
- We're preparing.

- Sake?
- No time for that. Let's discuss what to do.

Sake makes me bright.

They're going to pin their
crime on the Chamberlain.

They'll make him write a false confession then...

Then what?

You can be frank with us.

They'll make him kill himself.

- What shall we do, Mother? That's terrible.
- Don't worry.

Your father is a shrewd old fox.

It won't be easy to make him commit harakiri.

And what are you going to do?

We'll find him and get him back.

That's enough.
By shifting the blame,

they've shown their guilt.

If we rescue him, they'll be finished.

- That maybe so.
- Can we get him back?

If not, we'll be finished.

Please do your best.

But please don't use too much violence.

- By the way, may I have your name?
- My name?


Tsubaki (Camellia) Sanjuro (30-year-old).

Going on 40.

You're interesting.

Speaking of camellias, they're really beautiful.

Kurofuji's place is called Camellia Mansion.

Let's peek.

How is it?

Very quiet.

Who is it?

A camellia fell.

Why don't you relax and have another drink?

But, Kurofuji...

Will the Chamberlain write a confession so easily?

Leave it to the Superintendent.

Can you trust him?
He failed this time.

The Chamberlain is no fool.

We underestimated him.
There's a way.

His wife and daughter...

- Who is it?
- Muroto.

Muroto is reporting to Kurofuji.

About Aunt and Chidori?

That means the traitors are with Kurofuji.

The three of them together.

If they're in his house, my uncle is there too.

Fool! What were the guards doing?

- We can't use the women anymore.
- We can.

The Chamberlain doesn't know we lost them.

The problem is, they must be watching our houses.

They saw you come in.
They know we're here.

- That's right. We're in danger.
- Don't worry.

I sent my men to your houses too.

A man rushed in the Superintendent's.

A man reported to Takebayashi.

- Aren't they together?
- Where's my uncle?

But to carry out their plan,

they'll see the Chamberlain soon.
Let's wait.

Don't just sit and wait.
The Chamberlain's gone.

Stir up the people, run
around shouting "why?"

They'll want to kill him before that.

Give them no chance.

They'll be shocked and meet.

- What's the drum for?
- As planned.

"We have found that the
Chamberlain abused his authority."

"Accused of malfeasance,
he tried to destroy evidence."

"Therefore the elders sent a
messenger to our lord in Edo,"

"and confined him as a precaution."

"He seems to have many followers,
Remain calm,"

"and do not let them incite you.
Superintendent Kikui."

They moved quickly.

They're smart enough.

Too bad.
If the clan is quiet,

we can't make a move.
- If we do, we'll fall in their trap.

They'll have enough time to play their game.

They'll act.

They don't know we're only ten.

They said "many followers."

They must act.

We've done everything.

Relax, Takebayashi.
Pressure the Chamberlain.

- His men?
- They can't make a move.

That worries me.
Desperate men will try anything.

They're dangerous.

All right.

- We'll lure them out once again. And...
- We can't.

We can.
Let them know where the Chamberlain is.

As you said, they'll try anything to get him back.

When they show up,

arrest them.
- Nonsense!

Are you mad?
That's what worries me.

It won't be here.

We'll lure them out somewhere else.

Show them we're meeting there.

Don't worry.
There'll be no danger.

Only our palanquins will meet.

We don't have to be in them.

- They're moving!
- I'll follow them. Tell our men.

Kurofuji left in a palanquin!

Kurofuji entered Kikui's house.

Two palanquins have left Kikui's.

- Kurofuji and Kikui.
- Where to?

They entered Takebayashi's place.

Three palanquins left Takebayashi's.
They went west.

- Kurofuji's villa is there.
- That's the place. Let's go!

It'll be bad if they see you.

But there's only one guard for each palanquin.

It looks like a trick.
We could capture them easily.

- Good idea!
- Then make them confess.

Don't you think it sounds too easy?

- Bait looks easy to get.
- But,

if it's really a chance, don't miss it.

We'll follow them and attack them if possible.

- Do you agree?
- Not a good idea,

but it may keep me awake.

- Are they all there?
- Nothing suspicious about the palanquins?

You can't tell.

- No guards concealed?
- None at all.

- Let's attack.
- Before they enter the villa!

I think you'd better stop.

- Wait! There's something wrong.
- Be quiet!

Go ahead then.
Who cares?

Let's go!

Pardon me.

Aren't these the palanquins
of our senior clansmen?

We learned today

of the Chamberlain's misbehaviour.

With so few guards,

you seem to need help.

We're ready to help you.

Drop your weapons!

You're under arrest!

Don't pretend you're not the Chamberlain's men!

The Chamberlain's men?

No excuses!
It was the Superintendent's trick.

- You followed the palanquins!
- Wait.

You disgust me.
Stupidity is dangerous.

But how?

I happened to sneeze and the lady heard me.

She released me.

- Wearing my best kimono!
- She let me wear it.

Why didn't you escape?

I couldn't since the lady trusted me completely.

And your story is contrary to what I was told.

Good lesson.

Excuse me.

The lady is naive in every sense of the word.

She's stupid, that's all.

You mean the horsemen weren't the conspirators?

That's right.

We released them, but they refused to go.

They even suspect us and want our explanation.

Trapped by your own little tricks!

You made more enemies instead.
- No.

They came to guard us in the first place.

If we explain about the decoy palanquins...

They're all very strong.

They'll gladly help us.
- Good.

Rope them in and send them here.

That's not like you.

It'll show we're here.

Why not?

It's about time for a showdown.

The finale is close.

Judging from what the horsemen said,

the clansmen are on their side.

We're mice in a trap.

We've no chance.

Live or die the nine of us are together.


I'll go to Kikui.

- What for?
- A job.

Muroto kindly offered me one.

- Where to?
- We'll follow him.

He might betray us.

If so, why did he say he'd go to Kikui?

- He went to check his house.
- I think so too.

- He'll never betray us.

But what he said worries me.

No, that's the way he talks.

- It's true.
- You can't tell what he'll do.

A monster!

- Who are you?
- I want Muroto.

He's busy!

I've been waiting for you.

But I hear you're busy.
I'll come again.

Never mind.
Come in.

I trust him!

How many times did he save us?

People change!

He thinks it's time to leave us.

He has to worry about himself.

If he turns us in, he'll be employed.

He's poor, but a respectable samurai!

- He beat Kikui's men easily.
- Quiet!

He begged for money.
A samurai starves before he begs.

- He's just open and a little eccentric.
- I trust him.

He's a good man, I'm sure!
- You're the lady's kin.

You trust everyone!

Mother sent me to ask you why you were shouting.


- But...
- Nothing!

Excuse me.

I was listening in the closet.

- Get back!
- In a moment.

I trust that samurai, too.

I may sound strange, but...
when the lady climbed the wall,

he offered to be her footstool.

Her character impressed him.
It shows he's a good man.

He said she's stupid.

As someone said, that's the way he talks.

He means praise by abuse.

- Understand?
- No! I don't!

No more talk. We'll follow him.
He's dangerous.

Wait, don't split up.
One-sided judgement isn't fair.

If you go, we'll go two from each side...

Yasukawa and Kawahara.
Izaka and Hirose.

Everyone's out, so there's no welcome party.

A drink first.

With your help,

we can do something interesting.

You came just in time.

I saw the notice.
Trouble in the clan?

Quite a few men left here.
Where did they go?

I'll take you there.

By the way, the notice is all lies.

The Superintendent is the bad one.

- But he's your...
- Master. Like attracts like.

I'm bad too.

The Chamberlain's a fine man.
He's hard to fool.

But if he's removed,
this clan will be easy prey.

Kikui's shrewd.
A small man.

If he gains control of the clan...

- You and I will eat him.
- Precisely.

I'll introduce you to him.

Remember. He thinks he's a
clever, able man. So...

Pamper him nicely and he'll purr.

Right. You catch on fast.
Good partner!

We're being followed.

Turn right at the corner.

Don't kill him.

- Idiot! Why?
- I said "no," but if you betray us...

You'll have to get caught.
He's coming.

Attack me!
Come on!

This young man was rather strong.

A good present.
The group leader.

The Chamberlain's nephew.

A good present,

but too heavy to take to Kikui.

Take them away!

No enough guards.
They'll come to get them back.

No defence on the road.

Bring more guards.

It's dangerous.
Take two men.

Not enough.
I'll go.

I'll go with you.

It's me.
Open up!

The three guards are already dead.


I'll report it.

They wouldn't listen to you.
Take over.

Stop making trouble.

Know what I'm doing?
I'm letting them go.

You forced me to kill them.

Tie me up.

Ten men will clean up here.
The others, go back.

What's this?
Shame on you!

I lost this time.

But they were too many to fight.

I didn't want to die.

I have no reason to die like them.

Too bad.

They beat you.
I can't recommend you.


But I know his face.

I'll come back with him.

How smart you are!

You ruined my plan!

And you haven't found where Kikui's men are.

How peaceful!

At this rate,
when you find the Chamberlain,

I'll be a 70-year-old.

- How beautiful!
- This water comes from the Camellia Mansion.

- You know many things.
- I once heard Terada say so to Izaka.

"They say men shouldn't drink
stolen water, but..."

"I'm drinking the water of the wicked Kurofuji."

Iyori's name is on that paper.

- I see Terada's name too.
- What's that red blot?

Signed with blood!

Iyori! Iyori!

Kurofuji lives next door.

What's that?

Uncle put the torn letter in his sleeve.

He was wearing the same clothes

when he was caught.


Look what I found!

Bits of the torn letter.

It's evident:
My uncle is next door!

He tried hard to protect a bunch of fools like us.

He took a chance

and threw them in the stream.

You're being stupid again.

You want to attack them?
They're waiting for you.

Can't you see?
Kikui's men are next door!

Peek, if you doubt me.

Did he write?

It's not a confession.
It's an indictment!

The skunk!
How long will he make fools of us?

What now?

They're so many!

- What now?
- Their overrating us makes it worse.

That's it! I'll go tell them
I know where you are.

They overestimate the number of your group.

If I say an army has gathered.

Kikui's men will go there.

The house will be empty.

Then you'll raid it.

Where shall I say you are?

Not at a shrine again.
A temple?

I was upstairs in the gate
and saw you pass below.

It's not bad.
You know one?

Far enough to rescue the Chamberlain.

- Komyo Temple.
- Far enough...

- And secluded.
- Good. Komyo Temple?

Even after the men leave,
don't come till I signal.

Once you raid it, rescue him quickly,

or they'll kill him.

No other way.

Our last resort.


Wait until I'm sure we can
get the Chamberlain out.

- Wait until I signal you.
- Yes. What signal?

- When the house starts burning.
- No, that's too wild.

I have an idea.

Send something down the stream.

If we watch it, we'll find out.

That's a marvellous idea!

It's the peaceful way.
- It's from Camellia Mansion,

so why not send camellias?
A signal of red camellias!

It must be beautiful.

I'd prefer white ones.

What's the difference?

- But some fall naturally.
- I'll dump in a pile.

Open up!
I want Muroto.

It's bad!
Komyo Temple has no second story!

They'll know it's a lie.

How did you know I was here?

The Superintendent's men are here.

Why not you?

What is it?

Some information.

I was asleep upstairs...

- What'll we do?
- It's too late.

We failed to notice.

Maybe they will too.

I'll go and see.

Wait here.

Komyo Temple?
130 men?

But who's the masterless samurai?

- Never mind.
- Kikui, don't fail this time.

Of course.
I'll go myself.

We're going.
You too.

I haven't eaten since yesterday.

I can't fight on an empty stomach.

Feed me first.

I'll catch up with you later.

It worked! The men left!
Kikui too.

He was excited.

Leave me alone.
Or I'll be uncomfortable.

What are you doing?

I like camellias.

No jokes!

Oh, no!
It's a lie about Komyo Temple!

Its gate...


It has no second story!

Bring your men back!

There's fresh blood on this sword.

- You fooled me last night.
- Question him later! Hurry!

You're finished.

You mean you are.

Poor men!
You don't know anything.

- They'll attack you soon.
- What?

The conspirators, of course.

They're next door waiting for my signal.

If I don't stop them now,
they'll come to kill you.

Peek, if you doubt me.

- No signal?
- He's late!

If something's happened to him...

- What shall we do?
- We can't wait.

Let's attack!

- Can't wait!
- We always fail when we don't wait.

Let's wait!

He's right!
We must do something!

I'll make an offer.

Buy the signal for fifty pieces of gold.

Were they watching the stream?

- Yes.
- Send something down on the stream.

He had many red camellias

when he was caught!

What signal are they?

- Give me fifty.
- Tell us, or we'll kill you!

- Thirty then.
- All right, I'll tell you.

Red camellias mean attack;

white ones, stop.

No signal means I'm in trouble
and they'll attack.

Be calm.
White ones.


Don't be stingy.


Just in time!

You're trapped!
The colour doesn't matter.

130 men are coming!
You're finished!

Don't kill them!

Open up! It's Muroto!
Open the gate!

It's all over.

- He's late. What's his name?
- It's Tsubaki.

Don't forget the name of the man who saved you.

- That's too bad.
- No, no.

Bring him.
Say everyone is waiting for him.

This is an unpleasant subject to talk about.

The traitors were punished.

The Superintendent already
punished himself with death.

I regret it very much.

Like the other two

who were banished.

I could have saved his life, at least.

I'd hoped to handle the matter in a quieter way.

After gaining proof,

I could have made them retire peacefully.

- Forgive us.
- Nothing to forgive.

I should have gained your trust.

I find this long horse face
of mine a great drawback.

Long ago, someone saw me

on horseback and said...

"The horse's face is shorter than the rider's."

He's gone.

- I found only these in his room.
- Gone in rags?

Go and look for him.

Fortunately he won't return.

- "Fortunately?"
- He's a great man.

But extraordinary men like
him are too much for me.

He wouldn't like to stay here

for the rest of his life.

He'll never wear these

and work for the clan.

- He's gone.
- The guard said west.

Only this road then.

Go back!
I won't return!

- Must we fight?
- Yes!

You're treacherous.
You made a fool of me.

Don't get so mad.
I couldn't help it.

I respected you.
So I...

Too late now!

I'd rather not.
If I do,

one of us must die.
It's not worth it.

It is to me.

Otherwise I'll never feel at ease.

Very well.

But even if you kill me,

don't kill them.

Keep away!


You don't know anything!

Be careful.

I'm in a bad mood.

He was exactly like me.

A naked sword.
He didn't stay in his sheath.

The lady's right.

Good swords are kept in their sheaths.

You'd better stay in yours.

Don't follow me, or I'll kill you!