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one of the best samurai movies ever
One of my all time favorite samurai films. This has it all. great characters, heart rending story of poverty, love, historical transition, as well as two of the best realistic sword fights on screen. An instant classic.
We're used to samurai being portrayed as superhuman warriors, but here's a very different take, and a very different kind of hero, who couldn't be more reluctant to unsheathe his sword. Hiroyuki Sanada's performance in the title role is mesmerising - he's so ridiculously likeable that I found myself hoping NOT to see full-throttle sword fighting because I didn't want him to get hurt. I wouldn't recommend the film to those watch samurai films for the fighting as there's hardly any of that kind of action - instead there's a very real, interesting character, who happens to be a samurai, and whose fate is far more interesting than any number of beautifully choreographed battles.
No chop-socky nonsense, no flying fighters, just an excellent film.
Touching and powerful yet humble. A story about a samurai who knows who he is and what he values. His unique perspective allows him to find happiness in the wake of personal tragedy and within the confines of feudalistic Japanese hierarchy. I can't articulate just how heroic this character is. The swordwork really serves the story well and is as always, a treat to watch from Sanada Sensei.
Not an epic, but a simple story of love, suffering, family, death full of humanism. You will be pleasantly surprised.
"A serious fight, the killing of a man, requires animal ferocity and calm disregard for one's own life. I have neither of those within me now."
This film along with The Hidden Blade (same director) are two of the best samurai movies out there. When I say samurai movie, I mean one that is not only historically accurate, but the story is deep and moving. If you rather watch action rubbish, then go google some ninja vs samurai crap.
There's nothing more heartbreaking than to see a samurai at the end of his rope. Though the concept of the Bamboo Sword is similar to the film 'Harakiri'.
A very well done Japanese film. A story about a simple samurai who doesn't want to fight but is obliged to do it by his clan leader. Something about Edo period Japan that I love.
Saw this on 18/12/15
An above avg Samurai drama with effective performances from Hiroyuki Sanada and especially Rie Miyazawa. The setup is predictable, but it's emotional and fast paced. The story could have been better, but it captures the life of a samurai as a common man living in a changing era.