Red Sun (1971) - Plot Summary Poster



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  • In 1870, a gang robs a train and steals a ceremonial Japanese sword meant as a gift from Japan to the U.S. President, prompting a manhunt to retrieve it.

  • The Japanese ambassador is traveling through the Wild West by train, when gangsters hold up the train, to rob a gold shipment. They also carry an ancient Japanese sword the ambassador was carrying as a present for the US president. The ambassador's bodyguard (Toshiro Mifune) will go after them, with the aid of one of the gang's leaders betrayed by his pals...

  • It's 1870 in the American west. Outlaw Link Stuart and his bandits, which includes a suave Frenchman nicknamed Gauche, proceed to rob a train, taking the valuables from the passengers and looting the cargo. One of the passengers is the Japanese ambassador traveling to Washington to meet President Ulysses S. Grant, the Ambassador and his security detail of two samurai who are in their own private car. As such, one of the unexpected treasures the bandits is able to obtain is a ceremonial Japanese sword which was meant as a gift from the Japanese government to the President. But in the bandits' getaway, Link is double crossed by Gauche, who mistakenly assumes Link is killed in the ensuing melee. So Gauche now becomes the common enemy for both Link and the Ambassador, who is able to convince a reluctant Link to allow one of his samurai, Kuroda Jubie, to accompany him to locate Gauche and the loot. Although Gauche is a common enemy, the missions for Link and Kuroda are somewhat incompatible, as Link knows the samurai solely wants to kill Gauche to retrieve the sword, while Link has to get the information of the location of the loot from Gauche before he is killed. Also Link and Kuroda are working on different motives and different sensibilities, Link's motive which is largely monetary, while Kuroda's is solely honor, not being able to retrieve the sword which would mean dishonor and needing to go through the ritual of harakiri for eternal redemption. Although Kuroda is more than capable of taking care of himself, perhaps even more so than Link, he is still a fish out of water, and requires Link's knowledge of Gauche and the region to find him. Part of that knowledge is Cristina, Gauche's prostitute girlfriend who they may need to turn to find him. Beyond finding Gauche and trying to overcome their own differences, Link and Kuroda may have other natural obstacles of the region, namely other enemies not yet in the picture such as other bandits or marauding Comanches.

  • The story takes place in Arizona, around 1870. Link and Gotch are two ruthless robbers that attack along with their men at the train which carries the ambassador of Japan over to Washington. During the robbery, Gotch takes a very valuable gold sword, which is a gift from the emperor to the president of the U.S. and tries to kill Link, so that he can take all the money for himself. Now Kuroda (the only survivor of the samurais that escorted the ambassador) and Link must leave their differences aside and work together. They both want to find Gotch, but for different reasons: Kuroda wants to take back the sword, and Link wants the stolen money. All this must be done in seven days, or the samurai will kill Link and himself.


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