16. Seven Samurai (1954)
directed by Akira Kurosawa
Inspired by the rugged American westerns, Akira Kurosawa created an epic tale of noble warriors who commit their lives to save a town of peasants. With a well-crafted story and beautiful cinematography (his use of slow-motion was revolutionary), Seven Samurai (Shichinin no samurai) remains a landmark of Japanese cinema. Ironically, it became the inspiration for John Sturges’ The Magnificent Seven.