The Unofficial Shinobi no Mono Site
Shinobi no Mono is a series of eight jidaigeki (Japanese historical dramas - see The Films for plot summaries) which were released in Japan over a four year period from 1962 to 1966 by Daiei Pictures. The plot of the first few films focuses on a ninja named Ishikawa Goemon and his struggle to survive during Japan's warring states period. The films star Ichikawa Raizo (of Nemuri Kyoshiro / Sleepy Eyes of Death fame) who plays Ishikawa Goemon as well as several other characters throughout the series. Wakayama Tomisaburo (of Kozure Ookami / Lone Wolf and Cub fame) also appears in the first four movies.
After searching for information about these movies, I was lucky enough to find the collector's boxed set on LaserDisc during a visit to Japan in January 1997. I had heard a lot about these movies throughout my years in the martial arts and I was excited to finally find the whole set in their original widescreen format.
I paid the rather exorbitant price and lugged the set around during my last visit to Shinjuku before I returned to the States. When I got home, I was delighted by both the quality of the movies and the cool story lines. The acting is head and shoulders above the average martial arts film and the action scenes are fantastic!
Take a look at a short clip from the first film.
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