The second movie in director Tomu Uchida’s grand five-film series recounts how an upstart 16th-century swordsman (Kinnosuke Nakamura) becomes a samurai, earns his now-legendary name Miyamoto Musashi, then treks across Japan to train with a group of martial-arts monks. But before he reaches the priests, Musashi must test his skills against a group of rogue ronin warriors who have turned to highway robbery and other criminal enterprises.
Uchida Tomu was born in the city of Okayama, Okayama Prefecture on April 26, 1898 to a family of confectionary makers. After dropping out of high school and spending time as a piano tuner in Yokohama, Uchida worked on and off for the Taisho Katsuei Motion Picture Company founded in May 1920. Nicknamed Tom by his gang, he took the stage name Tomu and became an actor, also serving as an assistant director, assistant cameraman and stagehand. Uchida joined the Makino educational films (Makino Kyoikueiga Seisakusho) in Kyoto, and directed his first film Aa, Konishi Junsa (Police Officer Konishi, 1922) with Kinugasa Teinosuke; however, his innate wanderlust soon had him off traveling around Japan, mixing with the people at the bottom of the social ladder. In 1926 he went to work for Nikkatsu, making his proper directorial debut with Kyoso Mikkakan (Three Days of Competition, 1927). Following his early light comedies, Uchida went on to make the socialist leaning… read more