Yagyu Abaretabi – 柳生あばれ旅 [1980]

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Yagyu Abaretabi – 柳生あばれ旅 [1980]

YAGYU JUBEI ABARETABI
The Sequel to the Yagyu Conspiracy

Starring : Sonny Chiba, SHIHOMI Etsuko, NAGATO Isamu, SANADA Hiroyuki,

In the 15th year of the Kanei Era, a martial arts tournament is held at Edo Castle. In attendance are Shogun Iemitsu Tokugawa, his sword instructor Munenori Yagyu: Lord of Tajima, and his son Jubei Yagyu, and from Satsuma, Iehisa Shimazu.

At the conclusion of the tournament, Prime Minister Shimazu’s 3 fighters, the Nangu brothers, end up victorious. After Munenori deflects a challenge to Jubei by the 3 men, Jubei and Iemitsu agree to put on a display of the Yagyu’s famous Shinkage-ryo style of swordfighting.

During the bout, Jubei goes mad and repeatedly attacks the Shogun, his father, the Nango brothers and the Samurai in attendance, before riding off on horseback. With his son Jubei now a wanted criminal and his son Matajuro confined to the Yagyu village, Munenori must make a difficult decision: who will take over for Jubei and inspect the Nakasen route between Edo and Kyuto.

He decides his daughter Akane will disguise herself as a man and call herself Nuinosuke Yagyu. Joining Akane will be longtime Yagyu family friend Tarobei Kaburagi and Ura-Yagyu Arisuke Arisawa. Arisuke’s sister Akemi, another member of the Ura-Yagyu (“Secret” Yagyu), will also watch out for Akane and act as chief spy for the group.

Also helping Akane on her journey will be Jubei, whose madness was all a ruse devised by Tajima and the Shogun. Working from the shadows, Jubei disguises himself both as Maboroshi Tengu, a Phantom Goblin who “lurks in the darkness and destroys evil”, and as an old man named Gonbei who befriends Okoma and her Yume-no-ya troupe, a groupe of travelling stage performers. Working with Jubei are the other members of the Ura-Yagyu: Ryota, Shinsuke, Suhei, Okiri and Oen, who disguise themselves as accrobats and join the Yume-no-ya troupe. From time to time, wandering half-brother Matahei also assists Akane and Jubei on their mission.

As the journey progesses, Akane and her group encounter all sorts of corruption by local town officials and a conspiracy against the Shogunate by the Satsuma clan led by Iehisa Shimazu. Akane also discovers the truth about her past and is reunited with a long lost relative before finally putting an end to the plot against the Shogun.

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