The Hidden Blade Reviews
A much more complex story than the first film (tasogare seibei), but still really enjoyable.
Nagase Masatoshi takes the main role and while he lacks the charisma of Sanada he is well suited to the character and is ably matched by Matsu Takako as the perfectly suited but socially off limits housemaid.
The late Ogata Ken excels as a very unpleasant high ranking official.
There are quite a few threads to this film but it has an odd story arc that sets a very odd pace. It has a slightly lazy feeling.
But wait... is this? Could it be? A romance film? "Ahhhh shhhiiiiieeeeeett!" Now, it may be known that I tend to gag at rom-coms and anything slightly sentimental, YET I couldn't help but become entranced with Katagirl and Kie's relationship (or lack thereof). High class samurai and a peasant servant? Can't happen. Tsk, tsk, I think love says otherwise....
Yes it's obvious what plays out on the romantic side, yet there is an equally important (and far more interesting) tale of honor and loyalty between two old "friends." Not much swordplay, plenty of comedy, and romance... yet I like it? I'm getting old.