In conjunction with the current exhibit “Samurai and The Culture of Japan’s Great Peace”, the Yale Peabody Museum is co-sponsoring The Samurai Film Series. The Series includes three films that highlight the code of samurai from different perspectives, both positive and critical. The selected films have also been influential in Western culture and cinema, and these connections will be highlighted during the screening.
The Hidden Fortress is a 1958 film directed by Akira Kurosawa, one of the world’s greatest filmmakers, and stars Toshiro Mifune as General Makabe Rokurōta and Misa Uehara as Princess Yuki. It is the film that inspired Star Wars. The film is an excellent example of the vision of the samurai as a loyal hero whose values of individual honor, playing off the earthly actions of commoners, inspired many throughout the world.
The series is co-sponsored by Yale University’s Film and Media Studies department, the Whitney Humanities Center and the Yale Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures. Support for the film series is from the Connecticut Humanities, a nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, which supports cultural and historic organizations that tell the state’s stories, build community and enrich lives. Professor Aaron Gerow will introduce the film with a short talk and discussion.