Wow, talk about a rip-off. Yojimbo, a confusing, feudal movie about a lone samurai wandering into town and causing trouble, is certainly not the first proprietor of this plot-archetype. Five minutes into the movie, I was already disgusted with how blatantly it was ripping off its plot from genius director Sergio Leone. I mean, seriously, that alone should quantify the extent of this movie's failure – it completely lacks originality and was lifted scene-by-scene from the hard work of a different, vastly superior director.
It's basically a very bad case of the emperor's clothes. Everyone just loves to love this movie, because they think that liking pretentious and artsy movies from Korean directors will make them look smart – especially if those movies are from the '70s. It's like I missed something. Is the acting supposed to be good? Because Toshiro Mifune often takes 3 motions where an otherwise very mediocre actor could have conveyed the same amount of action using only one movement. Is the directing supposed to be good? The writing? The camerawork? All I could find in this movie, and, let me tell you, there was a lot of movie to look through (this trash clocks in at over an hour and a half!), was bad acting, a boring story that was way too slow, and a nearly endless fusillade of uninteresting dialogue as characters ran around town like headless chickens. At least there was a pretty girl in this movie, otherwise I don't know how I could have survived.
That this movie isn't American wasn't even the problem for me. I have seen plenty of foreign movies, from all around the globe: The Godfather (Italy), Casablanca (Africa), Platoon (Vietnam), and even Lord of the Rings (Middle Earth)! Sorry, folks. This movie just isn't good. It isn't a landmark contribution to the cinematic hall of fame; it's more like getting a papercut and then being forced to go swimming in a pool full of lemonade. Maybe when I become the bigger man, or lose my astute and perspicacious abilities, I will revisit this idiotic sword-swiping bonanza and try again to understand what all the fuss is about.
In the meantime, sayonara.