Sunday, June 06, 2004

Great samurai film article... 

If you have any kind of interest in Samurai films, do yourself a favor and read this article. Great overview of the genre, how it really isn't so different from many aspects of other cultures and genres, and a listing of terms, people, and particular movies.

It took me a while to get into samurai films. The first time I saw Seven Samurai, I found the combination of length, bleakness, and unflinching look at poverty and suffering a bit hard to get into. The Kenshin anime didn't hit me at first either. What finally did it for me was seeing a bunch of the original Zatoichi movies on IFC, and then various other films like Kurosawa's Yojimbo and the Hidden Fortress. By the time I saw Seven Samurai a second time, I was able to appreciate it more than the first time. All the movies mentioned in the article are worth a look, and the AnimEigo DVDs for the Zatoichi movies are quite inexpensive. Give a samurai a chance. :)

BTW, I should clarify Zatoichi isn't really a samurai. He tends to call himself a Yakuza, though I think he isn't quite that either. Anyway, Hidden Fortress is interesting to see the origins of Star Wars, and Yojimbo is a great movie. I think the comparison of Mifune and Eastwood is apt...

[via Franklin]

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