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One thing that struck me about this movie was that it was a samurai film where swords played very little part in the action. The two major close combat sequences feature spears. The spearplay in this movie is well worth watching. Toshiro Mifune’s character (Makabe Rokurōta) makes frequent use of the hanging guard with his spear. There are a number of incidences when spears are swung to strike or deflect rather than just thrust and even swinging motions using just one hand. The movie is well worth a look if you want to refine you staff fighting and improvised weapons skills.
Here is a link to the duel sequence.More on the use of the staff and other weapons in my books.