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The Barbarian and the Geisha

  • Action
  • Drama
  • 1958
  • John Huston
  • 100 mins
  • U

Summary

Historical drama starring John Wayne. Mid-1850s Japan: Townsend Harris is sent by President Pierce to serve as the first American consul general in Japan. Accompanied only by his European translator, Harris arrives in the port city of Shimoda, but is met with hostility by the townspeople.

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Review

A star rating of 1 out of 5.

Tough-guy director John Huston teamed up with John Wayne for the first and last time to make this historical drama about Townsend Harris, America's first consul to Japan, and his diplomatic victory over the isolationist shoguns. Huston cast Wayne because he would physically and metaphorically tower over the Japanese, while Wayne was attracted to the role because it got him out of westerns and showed America's historical influence over their wartime enemy. Wayne and Huston loathed each other from day one, however, and the movie was an unmitigated disaster - from the indulgent casting of Huston's Oriental girlfriend, Eiko Ando, to a riot caused when a special-effects fire nearly wrecked a fishing village.

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Credits

Cast

rolename
Townsend HarrisJohn Wayne
OkichiEiko Ando
Henry HeuskenSam Jaffe
TamuraSo Yamamura
Ship captainNorman Thomson
Lieutenant FisherJames Robbins
Prime ministerMorita
DaimyoKodaya Ichikawa
ShogunHiroshi Yamato

Crew

rolename
DirectorJohn Huston

Details

Released on
1958-11-09
Languages
English | Japanese
Guidance
Available on
video and DVD
Formats
Colour
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