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The Challenge (1982)

R | | Action, Drama | 23 July 1982 (USA)
A down-and-out American boxer becomes involved in a feud between two Japanese brothers.

Director:

John Frankenheimer
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Scott Glenn ... Rick
Toshirô Mifune ... Yoshida
Donna Kei Benz Donna Kei Benz ... Akiko
Atsuo Nakamura Atsuo Nakamura ... Hideo
Calvin Jung ... Ando
Clyde Kusatsu ... Go
Sab Shimono ... Toshio
Kiyoaki Nagai Kiyoaki Nagai ... Kubo
Kenta Fukasaku Kenta Fukasaku ... Jiro
Shôgo Shimada ... Father of Yoshida
Yoshio Inaba Yoshio Inaba ... Instructor
Seiji Miyaguchi ... Old Man
Miiko Taka ... Yoshida's Wife
Akio Kameda Akio Kameda ... Boxer
Hisashi Osaka Hisashi Osaka ... Knifeman
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Storyline

Rick, a down-and-out American boxer, is hired to transport a sword to Japan, unaware that the whole thing is a set up in a bitter blood-feud between two brothers, one who follows the traditional path of the samurai and the other a businessman. At the behest of the businessman, Rick undertakes samurai training from the other brother, but joins his cause. He also becomes romantically involved with the samurai's daughter. Written by <scrow@chop.isca.uiowa.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

He has trained every thought, every muscle, every nerve, for the moment of truth!

Genres:

Action | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Japan

Language:

English | Japanese

Release Date:

23 July 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Equals See more »

Filming Locations:

Kyoto, Japan See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,977,706

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$2,977,706
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The name for the two fabled swords was "The Equals". One was engraved with a warrior's visage and the other was engraved with the image of a beautiful woman. See more »

Goofs

After Akiko disappears at the street festival, Rick runs into a guy with a walkie-talkie. As they're talking, people passing in the background look at the camera, duck, and run out of frame. See more »

Alternate Versions

The movie was renamed "Sword of the Ninja" for the U.S. Television version shown and was drastically reedited by about ten minutes due to it's graphic violence (decapitations, gun play, etc.) It also features commercial interludes that go into a silver portrait that would stop the film where the commercial break would begin and then return to the film after the commercial with the same interlude fading back into the film. This version of the film has rarely been seen since the late 90's and has been shown it's original 108 min. uncut version on cable networks since then. See more »

Connections

Referenced in P & B (1983) See more »

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User Reviews

A SADLY UNDERAPPRECIATED CLASSIC
21 February 2002 | by EL BUNCHOSee all my reviews

What seems to be just another "east meets west" actioner is given the John Frankenheimer treatment and comes up a winner. Scott Glenn is fantastic as a loser boxer recruited to help escort a priceless family heirloom back to Japan, and by the end o f the film he rediscovers his worth as a human being and man. Frankenheimer has always dealt extremely well with themes of "manliness" and this one is no exception. For a good companion piece, check out his even better "round-eye on the loose in Japan" flick THE YAKUZA.


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