Episode 44: Yojimbo/Fistful of Dollars (1961, 1964)

This week we’re taking a slightly different approach.  Thinking outside the box.  Shifting the paradigm.  Gleaning the cube. Shellacking the hamster. Something like that.  We’re taking on two movies by two different directors from two different countries with very different styles.  Technically, these two movies are very different: one is a black-and-white masterpiece about a rogue Samurai by legendary Japanese director Akira Kurosawa, and one is a classic in-color Sergio Leone “spaghetti Western” starring iron-jawed Clint Eastwood as The Man With No Name (except someone actually calls him by his name at some point).  But “Fistful of Dollars” is very clearly a remake of “Yojimbo.” Different settings, different details but almost identical plots and themes.  So, did Mr. Leone get permission from Mr. Kurosawa to create the same movie but with horses and guns? Umm . . . not so much.  Which is the better movie? Who are we to judge? Well, we’re Max and Mike.  Thought you knew that.  Come on, it’s part of the web address! Give a listen and get more details.

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