Yojimbo

Yojimbo

About Yojimbo

Yojimbo is a 1961 jidaigeki (period drama) film directed by Akira Kurosawa. It tells the story of a ronin, portrayed by Toshir Mifune, who arrives in a small town where competing crime lords vie for supremacy. The two bosses each try to hire the deadly newcomer as a bodyguard (yojimbo in Japanese). A ronin wanders into a small town being ruined by a gang war between Seibei and Ushitora. Ushitora used to be Seibei's right hand man, until Seibei decided that his son Yoichiro would succeed him. Tazaemon, the silk merchant and mayor, backs Seibei, while Tokuemon the sake brewer is allied with Ushitora. Gonji, a restaurant proprietor, advises the stranger to leave while he can, but after sizing up the situation, he tells Gonji that the town would be better off with both sides dead, and that he intends to do the job. The ronin first convinces the weaker Seibei to hire him as a kensei by demonstrating his skill, killing three of Ushitora's men.