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Samurai Rebellion dvd

In 1725, aging henpecked samurai Isaburo Sasahara is living a miserable life in an arranged loveless marriage to his wife Suga. An order comes from Lord Matsudaira basically forcing Isaburo’s son Yogoro to marry his mistress Ichi as she slapped the Lord in the face and ripped his clothes. Although Isaburo and his family are against this, Yogoro agrees for the good of the family. Isaburo expects Ichi to be a bit of a brat but instead finds her to be a quiet and humble woman who becomes a good obedient wife to Yogoro. They fall in love and produce a daughter Tomo. Just as things seem to be settling down, news comes on the grapevine that Lord Matsudaira’s young son has died and he wants Ichi to return to his castle so that he can produce an heir with her. This does not go down well with Yogoro and Isaburo. Although Ichi also refuses to go back to Lord Matsudaira she is tricked and kidnapped. Isaburo and his son decide to stand up to their Lord who wants both of them to commit harakiri for not following his orders. They refuse and a confrontation is inevitable so Lord Matsudaira sends out assassins to wipe them out. Will Isaburo’s family survive the onslaught of people sent out to kill them?

Samurai Rebellion is probably not that well known to Western viewers but it certainly deserves to be. It’s a brilliant movie which is filled with well-developed characters, is beautifully shot and superbly directed by Masaki Kobayashi. It has a great storyline about a patriarch who is forced to choose between following orders and the social injustice placed upon his close family by Lord Matsudaira. It highlights the disgraceful treatment placed upon women during that time period in that it doesn’t matter about Ichi’s feelings in the whole situation just as long as Lord Matsudaira is happy that’s all that matters. This is not your typical straight forward samurai movie with a ton of action involved (although there is plenty near the end), there’s a lot more emotion in this story revolving around love, duty and honour. The plot and the tension builds up slowly and it’s only during the final third that violence is introduced to the plot and it gets rather exciting for the viewer culminating in a rather tragic but satisfying conclusion. Even with the rather downbeat ending, Kobayashi still gives up hope in the very final scene. Once you start watching this movie you’ll find it hard not to get yourself immersed in the wonderful plot.

samurai-rebellion-screenshot

The cast are superb in their roles and Toshiro Mifune is on top of his game here as Isaburo and this movie shows that he could give an excellent performance even whilst not under the direction of Akira Kurosawa. He’s not as intense as he normally is and rather reserved for a change until the last 30 mins of the movie when all hell breaks loose and there’s some fantastic swordfighting action as Isaburo takes on all comers when he tries to escape to Edo with his tiny granddaughter in tow and the net is closing in on him by Matsurdaira’s assassins. There’s a touching scene in which he kisses little Tomo on her forehead before hiding her carefully and taking his final stand against the gunmen hidden in long grass which is choreographed extremely well. Yoko Tsukasa is perhaps the next to stand out in the cast and the viewer will feel a lot of sympathy towards her character of Ichi. She’s a graceful, intelligent and beautiful person. Ichi is such a likeable character who is tossed around like a toy between people.

This movie is as close to perfection as you can get with Toshiro Mifune giving one of his best ever performance. Samurai Rebellion is quite underrated but I would urge any Asian movie fan not to pass it up. It comes highly recommended.

Sadako’s Rating: 5 stars out of 5

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Battles Without Honor 5 Final

Before I start I must apologise for not putting that many reviews up this month, the reason being is that I’m trying to watch all of the IMDB Top 250 movies which has meant that I haven’t really watched that many Asian movies. Anyway onto the review:

It’s the beginning of the 70’s and Shozo Hirono is in prison after the events of the last movie (Police Tactics) and the yakuza groups have changed tactics since the police were putting a lot of pressure on them. The yakuza in Hiroshima reinvent themselves as a politicial organisation such as the Tensei Organisation. Despite trying to put up a front to the public that they’re all respectable people now, behind the scenes there is turmoil brewing. The chairman Takeda tries to stop his underlings from being violent but it’s hard for some of them to change their ways and as a result of various actions Takeda finds himself in prison for several years. The substitute chairman Matsumura finds the Tensei Organisation collapsing all around him as various factions start bickering amongst themselves with the leader of the Otomo group allying himself with other factions to try and take over from Matsumoto. Hirono’s sworn brother Ichioka is also stirring up trouble in order that once Hirono is out of prison he can walk back into Hiroshima and take control. With Hirono’s imminent release, the Tensei Organisation is nervous about what to do with him. Do they persuade him to retire or take him out?

Battles Without Honor Final Episode screenshot

The final movie in the 5-part Battles Withour Honor series whilst intriguing is not as good as some of the other entries I’ve seen. It’s more of a talky movie and although there are several violent skirmishes throughout it’s not as bloodthirsty as previous installments. The usual fragile alliances and backstabbings which formed the backbone of the movies continues in this one. The main protaganist in the other 4 movies – Shozo Hirono is barely seen for the majority of this movie and only takes a main part in the storyline during the last 30 mins. The plot this time round is more or less showing us the changing of the guard in the yakuza. Old timers such as Takeda and Shirono who may have wielded great power 25 years ago just after the end of the World War II are now coming to the end of their reign and the young pretenders are beginning to take over. I expected seeing as this was the final episode in the series to see an epic conclusion but I was disappointed more than anything. It ends with a whimper instead of a bang. I thought the story might build up to a big yakuza battle at the climax but there’s nothing of the sort taking place. I was expecting an ending to Hirono’s grudge against his enemy Yamamori but it stays unresolved. The main problem is that with Hirono out of the picture the movie is just not as interesting when he’s not around and when he finally does take a major part to play his mindset is different. The time he’s spent in prison and writing his memoirs has made him realise that the bloodshed that’s been spilt over the years just isn’t worth it anymore. Even with the old guard stepping down, the violence in Hiroshima continues with the younger members vying for control of the various gangs. Director Kinji Fukasaku has to be congratulated for managing to weave such a complicated plot throughout the 5 movies which takes place over a course of 25 years. It is so easy to find yourself lost with all the characters that the viewer is introduced to with many perishing in the violence that takes place. One wonders how the yakuza recruit so many inept members as they cannot seem to kill properly with several scenes in this movies showing how useless they are. They manage to miss their targets regularly when firing off their guns and even then it seems to take them a round of bullets to finish somebody off!

Although he’s not in the story for long, Bunta Sugawara delivers another great performance as Hirono who has wisened up considerably whilst in prison. He can see how futile it is to continue being a gangster. He’s not that young anymore and if he continued in the game he’d more than likely end up with a bullet in his head. The rest of the cast are effective in their roles with the standout being chipmunk faced Jo Shishido who goes OTT as Otomo, a yakuza boss who flies off easily in a rage.

Barring the disappointing final entry, the Battles Without Honor & Humanity franchise has been an incredible set of movies and their popularity would see Kinji Fukasaku unveil another yakuza trilogy called New Battles Without Honor & Humanity from 1974-76 with Bunta Sugawara but playing an entirely different character. I’m looking forward one day to checking them out.

No trailer I’m afraid.

Sadako’s Rating: 3 stars out of 5

 

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super hero taisen

Captain Marvellous, the leader of the pirate themed Gokaiger sentai team has seemingly gone bad and teamed up with the Dai Zangyak organisation which consists of the most memorable villains to ever face the sentai teams in order to wage war on the Kamen Riders. His fellow teammates doesn’t seem to understand this term of events. KR Decade meanwhile has also teamed up with the Dai Shocker group as it’s leader to destroy the Super Sentai teams. Past and present Riders and Super Sentai teams are caught up in the conflict amidst some confusion as to why this war has been started. Each leader insists that in order for their respective teams (super sentai/rider) to survive the other must be destroyed. Is there a hidden agenda used by both Marvelous and Decade which would explain why they’ve turned bad and could it be that they are being manipulated by Dai Shocker and Dai Zangyak for their own nefarious needs?

super hero taisen screenshot

If you didn’t already know this, there are basically 2 superhero franchises over in Japan which has been entertaining kids for well over a quarter of a century – Super Sentai (better known in the West as the various Power Ranger teams) and Kamen Rider. There have been various crossover movies in the past featuring 2 super sentai or 2 riders teaming up to defeat evil but never before has there been a movie where both franchises come together in one movie to duke it out. Depending on whether you’re a serious fanboy/fangirl or just a person that occasionally dips in to both franchises there’s much to enjoy in this movie. It’s a lot of fun and I thought it was even better than the All Riders vs DaiShocker movie. You’d think that both sets of fans would lap this movie up and although it did extremely well at the Japanese box office there’s been a mixed reaction from them. A lot seem to be confused as to why Captain Marvellous (Red Gokai) would team up with his sworn enemies to take on the Riders. I completely understand with Tsukasa aka KR Decade as he’s a total badass and it’s something he’s done before. There’s also the fact that because there’s over 200 heroes filling the screen that it was hard to give the majority of them any decent screen time. Another complaint is why doesn’t any of the Super Sentai teams apart from the GoBusters use their mechas to take on the Big Machine at the movie’s climax. That’s a fair enough comment I thought. As I’m unfamiliar with what happens at the end of both Gokaiger and KR Decade series I can’t say anything on the plotholes that came with the story which made it a real mess in the fans’ eyes. It’s quite a simple story as such with 4 characters from various series trying to figure out why Marvellous and Decade have gone rogue. It didn’t really matter to me that apparently some roles were totally out-of-character from who they usually are. All I saw was an epic movie that delivered on cool cameos, some time travelling courtesy of the Den Liner and plenty of action/fight scenes. The acting by everybody including the camp villains was good. The big rumble which sees the heroes squaring off against the villains was a bit too short for my liking but I still came away feeling very satisfied and happy after the movie finished. Hell, I even thought KR Fourze was less annoying than usual in this movie!

If you’re prepared to ignore the so-called apparent flaws in the storyline as pointed out by hardcore fans and take the movie on face value alone there’s plenty of fanservice here to really entertain you. I loved it and thought it was one of the best tokusatsu movies I’ve seen in a while. Recommended.

Sadako’s Rating: 4 stars out of 5

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Memories-of-Murder-dvd

1986 Gyunggi Province. The body of a young woman is found brutally raped and murdered. Two months later, a series of rapes and murders commences under similar circumstances. And in a country that had never known such crimes, the dark whispers about a serial murderer grow louder. A special task force is set up in the area, with two local detectives Park Doo-Man and Jo Young-Goo joined by a detective from Seoul who requested to be assigned to the case, Seo Tae-Yoon. Park personifies the policeman who goes with his instincts and his fists, bloodily challenging every small-time crook in the area to confess. In contrast, Seo pores over evidentiary documents related to the case and inevitably the clash of styles leads to tense rivalry. From the fact that not a single hair is ever found at the scene, Park takes off to search the area’s temples and public baths for men with pubic hair disease, while Seo finds a pattern in the evidence of women wearing red on a rainy day as the victim’s profile. On a rainy day, the detectives set up a trap in order to forestall another murder. The next day however, yet another woman is found murdered. The solution to the murders grows fainter and drives the detectives to ever greater despair.

I will go on record here to say this is probably the finest Korean movie I’ve ever seen. It’s a masterpiece. Powerful, gutwrenching, even humorous at times with a taut script, this movie about South Korea’s first ever serial killer is one that nobody will ever forget after watching it. It’s also based on a true story in which 3000 suspects were questioned and 1.8 million cops were involved according to the prologue. Despite the police’s best efforts, the killer was never found and is still at large in South Korea. It seemed the killer was calculated, meticulous and always one step ahead of the police in everything he did. The story begins in 1986 with the discovery of a woman’s body with her hands tied in a drainage culvert, this sets off a chain of events in which more victims turn up. Each victim has been strangled by their own stockings. The two local detectives on the case including their chief are clearly seen to be completely out of their depth. They also don’t seem to have a clue as to how to keep a crime scene clean until the forensic team arrive with kids and even tractors trampling over vital evidence. Enter Detective Seo Tae-Yun from Seoul who provides a different approach to the case. Instead of using brutality to coerce a confession out of suspects, he uses a more rational way of trying to find the killer. It’s inevitable that he and the local detectives clash. But even with Seo Tae-Yun on board with some clues being found, it becomes apparent that the police force is becoming desperate to nail this sadistic killer. Pinning their hopes on a man with smooth hands after a confession from a female victim who wasn’t killed and the fact that he sent a request for a song ‘Sad Letter’ to be played on the radio on every night a woman is killed, the 3 detectives begin to investigate him. With some evidence sent to the US for verification because South Korea didn’t have DNA testing at the time, they hope that it will prove without a shadow of a doubt that this is their man.

memories-of-murder screenshot

The story is so engrossing and compelling. It sucks you right into the investigation and you definitely feel the frustration of the detectives building up as more bodies turn up. It might not have the Hollywood theatrics of Se7en or The Silence Of The Lambs but don’t believe for a second that this movie is inferior to them in any way shape or form. The movie also gives a good history lesson about the state of South Korea during the mid 80’s when it was still under a military dictatorship with martial law being declared at night with an air-raid siren going off, social unrest happening on the streets and schools participating in an emergency rehearsal in case of an attack by the North. Director Bong Joon-ho has crafted a fantastic suspensful thriller with beautiful haunting cinematography and an amazing soundtrackwhich keeps you on the edge of your seat throughout the 2 hours or so running time. If I had to pick out highlights from the movie it would come down to the fantastic chase scene during the night and a brilliant free-for-all brawl at a restaurant as tensions boil over from one of the detectives who has been suspended due to overuse of violence on a suspect. Don’t expect to find a happy ending to the story though there is an intriguing final scene at the location of the first murder.

The acting from Song Kang-ho, Kim Roe-ha and Kim Sang-kyung as the detectives on the case is excellent and it’s sad to see them fail in their task to being the killer to task despite giving their all to the case day after day. It’s interesting to see how the relationship between the 2 country detectives and the city detective develop as the story progresses. Initially there is a rivalry between them due to their differing styles of investigating – the country pair are either lazy or plain stupid as they blatantly frame suspects and play the good cop/bad cop routine in order to get a confession but all three men become bound together by frustration as each clue they find brings them no closer to catching the real suspect.

Memories Of Murder is an unmissable movie. It’s an exceptional movie in all aspects and I have no hesitation in highly recommending it.

Sadako’s Rating: 5 stars out of 5

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Hard Romanticker

Gu is a hard-nosed Korean-Japanese hoodlum living in Shimonoseki, Japan. When friends “accidentally” kill the grandmother of a ruthless North Korean-Japanese thug, a whirlwind of violence and revenge is set to explode. In the process, Gu, having no fear, pisses off a string of other criminal gang members and Korean-Japanese thugs who all want him dead. There’s also Detective Fujita lingering in the shadows looking for Gu, but where is he? To escape from it all Gu lucks his way into a managerial job in another city for a hostess club, run by a suave man named Takagi. Instincts tells Gu that Takagi is more than he seems. In fact, Takagi works for a rival gang and may be involved with drugs. Gu’s grandmother drops by to inform him that his best friend has been killed. This persuades Gu to return to Shimonoseki to settle the score. All hell is about to break loose.

This movie takes a very violent look at the criminal underworld involving the Zainichi (Korean-Japanese). Those who enjoyed the “Crows Zero” movies which involved a lot of male testosterone gang violence will want to take a look at this movie though unlike those movies this one doesn’t have any sympathetic characters (apart from Gu’s grandmother) portrayed in it at all. The story is based on the experiences of the director Gu Su Yeon when he was younger. It is set in Shimonoseki, a city where there is a high percentage of ethnic Koreans live in Japan. Koreans living in Japan aren’t looked at favourably by the Japanese people and to say that life isn’t easy for them is quite an understatement. The plot focuses on a cocky and charismatic young man who’s quite an unpleasant and vicious character (same goes for the majority of characters in this movie). He goes around upsetting nearly everybody with his devil may care attitude which naturally makes him a lot of enemies. He’s not averse to even beating up his superiors with a motorcycle helmet when two of them attempt to rape a young woman in their apartment. That might make him seen like a champion of women of sort to some viewers but later we see again just what a nasty piece of work he really is. Gu is seen trying to date a high school girl named Mieko Nakamura who catches his eye but when he finds out that she has been having sex with his friend his payback is brutally raping her in a park. The treatment of women in this movie is rather appalling and they are seen as merely sex objects to be treated badly by the men. It’s only a matter of time before Gu is going to be subjected to his own brand of medicine so when he picks on North Korean gang leader Park and his 3 cronies in a cafe with a metal bar who he thinks has murdered his close friend, the beating Gu receives is more than deserved. If it’s spectacular street violence you want and see, it’s got it in droves here with a lot of people being beaten up, murdered and even stabbed. The fights are choreographed well and even looks real. Even with all the violence going on in this movie there is some dark humour peppered throughout and a cool funky jazz soundtrack. Movie fans who are familiar with Japanese 70’s crime movies such as the Battles Without Honor series will see that this one has got that feel to it. I’m not sure if this was the director’s own way of paying tribute to those kind of movies?

Hard Romanticker screenshot

Shota Matsuda who is best known in the past couple of years from the drama Liar Game gives a terrific performance as the badboy Gu. He plays a character so different from Akiyama here. Matsuda has some Korean blood from his late father’s side who was half-Korean and acted in some violent movies during the 70’s so I’m sure he watched a couple of his father’s work to draw inspiration for his own role. The character of Gu is quite amusing in the way he swaggers around town like he owns the place, slapping some of the other thugs across the head and just doing whatever he wants whenever he wants regardless of the consequences he might face in the future.

Due to the violence on display and the harsh treatment the women receive, Hard Romanticker certainly won’t be to everyone’s taste but if you like these kind of fast paced rough and tumble movies you should find it very enjoyable.

Sadako’s Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

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Zombie 108

A scientist creates a deadly virus that unfortunately gets released after a tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan. The virus spreads all over the world and turns people into the living dead. In an unknown city somewhere in Taiwan, SWAT teams are called in to evacuate civilians from an infected area. They cross swords with an armed gang who are unaware of the danger they’re in and refuse to move. An armed battle commences between the two until they have to join forces when a horde of zombies arrive on the scene. In the midst of this chaos, a strange perverted man is kidnapping women and keeping them locked inside his basement cell for his own sick pleasure, a young mother who was trying to leave the city with her young daughter being his latest victim. Will she able to escape from this monster?

zombie-108 screenshot

Hailed as being the first Taiwanese zombie movie ever made, perhaps the young director that made this shouldn’t have bothered in hindsight as this is one of the worst Asian movies I’ve had the misfortune of watching and I can’t believe I wasted 86 mins of my life with this piece of junk. It’s hard to even find anything positive to say about it. The trailer makes it look like a good movie but believe me it’s not. The plot is hardly new or original borrowing many elements from other zombie movies. There’s nothing you haven’t seen before. Director Joe Chien has made this movie into an incoherent mess and it feels like it’s been made by an amateur. It’s all over the place. There’s no atmosphere or a feeling of dread associated with the story, all Chien cares about is giving the viewer some nasty rapes, a little bit of gore and carnage. It’s like you’re watching two different movies which somehow ends being mashed up together in the end. There’s no structure in the story, it just moves from one random scene to the next with too many characters floating about. The director should have just focused on one main plot and concentrated on making it interesting. Is the movie also played for laughs at times? It’s hard to tell. You have to ask why did the director want to also rip off the Texas Chainsaw Massacre with his sleazy perverted female kidnapper that looks like Leatherface? The director himself plays this character. It feels like Chien made the decision to forget about the story and concentrate instead on the exploitation side. Perhaps he was aiming for a certain type of viewer with this old school Cat III style movie and not for the general masses? With the amount of nudity by the women and the sleaze on display it appears to be the case. The pace of the movie is fast but the way the movie has been shot is quite distracting to watch. The special effects given that it’s a low budget production is passable enough but if you’re after a ton of bloodletting you’re going to get disappointed. The death metal soundtrack the viewer is subjected to over the course of the movie gets annoying very quickly and worse of all the acting by the entire cast is atrocious. The script is very badly written. Chien also finds it necessary to put some anti-Japan propaganda in this movie as well which should have really been left out. Fine, everybody knows about the tension between China and Japan at the moment but politics shouldn’t have a place in a movie like this.

Do yourself a favour and avoid this movie like the plague. I can’t tell you enough how bad it is. A complete and utter failure. A disaster all round. I cannot recommend this to anybody.

Sadako’s Rating: 1 star out of 5

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Rurouni Kenshin (2012)

Rurouni Kenshin

It is the year 1868 in the dying days of the Bakumatsu era and the movie plunges us straight into the Battle of Toba-Fushima where Imperial forces triumph over the ruling Tokugawa Shogunate ushering in the Meiji era. Himura Kenshin is the most feared assassin in Japan, his skills in combat having earned him the title of “Hitokiri Battousai.” Fast forward 10 years on and Kenshin Himura has now become a wanderer who offers aid and protection to those in need as atonement for his past deeds. During this time he comes across and helps a headstrong young woman named Kaoru Kamiya when a warrior who is also calling himself Battousai nearly kills her. It seems this man has assumed Kenshin’s former identity in order to carry out some murders and he is working for a ruthless businessman named Kanryu Takeda who is lining up his pockets by dealing in opium. Kenshin is invited to stay at Kaoru’s dojo which was previously run by her father. A young woman also turns up at Kaoru’s place. Megumi is a pharmacist on the run from Kanryu who she works for. His goons soon arrive creating trouble when they ask Kaoru to sell the dojo as Kanryu wants the place for his opium operation. Kenshin with his inverted blade cleans house with the lot of them but Kanryu isn’t a man to give up easily. With a couple of ex-samurai warriors at his disposal, Kanryu hatches a plan to poison the local kids through the water in a well, kidnap Megumi and hold her as a hostage. Kenshin and his new friend, a street brawler named Sagora Sanosuke decide to take the fight to Kanryu and make their way to his mansion to settle things once and for all. Kanryu though is ready for them with his own secret weapon. Things get even worse for Kenshin when the fake Battousai kidnaps Kaoru in order to goad Kenshin into reverting back to his old murderous self. It boils down to a showdown between the two but will Kenshin who has vowed not to kill again go against his own wishes in order to defeat his more powerful opponent.

I came into watching Rurouni Kenshin with zero knowledge about the manga and the anime on which this movie has been based on. I knew it was very popular in Japan but that’s all I was aware of so I wasn’t really sure what kind of movie to expect. I kept thinking to myself should I watch some of the anime and get acquainted with the characters first before checking out the movie just in case I get completely lost in the story. I was also aware that there had been some grumblings from long-time fans. Making an adaptation of a popular manga was always going to be difficult for anybody as you’ve got to create a movie that will not only satisfy the fans whose expectations will demand that it be faithful to the source material but also cater to those that know nothing about the manga. It’s impossible to make everybody happy but fans should be open to some changes as no director can ever make a movie that is 100% faithful to the manga. Then there’s the additional problem of trying to cram everything into the movie. Where do you stop and what do you leave out?

Rurouni Kenshin screenshot

I thought this was a rather enjoyable movie and there’s nothing to worry about for newbies with no previous knowledge either. You’re not plunged into a story where it is assumed the characters are known to the audience. The beginning of the movie plus the addition of a flashback scene to the origins of Kenshin’s X mark scar on his face gives the viewer some background knowledge on the main character. The plot is a bit predictable in that you can see where the story is heading. There’s nothing new or original in that aspect. The fight choreography though is spectacular with some intricate wirework added to the proceedings at times. It’s fast and exciting with an intense swordfight at the climax (probably the highlight of the entire movie). I wouldn’t say this movie is suitable for young kids as there is some blood being shed during the fight scenes. There’s a very good balance of drama and action in the movie. The characters in the movie are appealing enough. There’s a hint of a love triangle going on between Kenshin, Kaoru and Megumi but it’s never developed properly. The movie rattles along at a good pace and it builds up to the inevitable final showdown between Kenshin and the fake Battousai (a person he knows very well from the past). The running time was sufficient enough (2hrs and 15 mins) though I did think the middle section started to sag a bit. The cinematography helped to enhance the mood and atmosphere of the movie.

Takeru Sato is fantastic as Kenshin Himura. When I first saw him onscreen I thought I recognised him from somewhere and that’s when it dawned on me that he was Kamen Rider Den-O. He is believable as the mannerly young man with a dark past and he portrays the two sides of Kenshin extremely well. I’m not sure if Emi Takei’s character Kaoru was supposed to be the leading female in this movie but it felt like she was overshadowed somewhat by the alluring Yu Aoi as Megumi. Megumi it has to be said is the more interesting character of the two due to her involvement with the villain Kanryu in creating a new type of opium. Both Emi Takei and Yu Aoi are very easy on the eye. I liked the character of the swaggering brawler Sagora Sanosuke and the incredibly large sword he wields. Teruyuki Kagawa is suitably OTT as Kanryu Takeda. I’m not in a position to say whether they stayed true to the characters that appeared on the pages of the manga or not. I’ll leave that up to the fans to argue over.

Rurouni Kenshin is a big-budget action-packed blockbuster which should appeal to long-time and non-fans alike. I found it very entertaining. This movie did extremely well at the Japanese box office because there’s already news that a sequel is on it’s way.

Sadako’s Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

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