An tale of revenge, honor and disgrace, centering on a poverty-stricken samurai who discovers the fate of his ronin son-in-law, setting in motion a tense showdown of vengeance against the house of a feudal lord.
As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of.
In 1844, the peace of Feudal Japan is threatened by cruel Lord Naritsugu Matsudaira, who is politically rising and getting closer to his half-brother, the shogun. After the harakiri of the Namiya clan leader, samurai Shinzaemon Shimada is summoned by the shogun's advisor Sir Doi of the Akashi Clan to listen to the tragedy of Makino Uneme, whose son and daughter-in-law have been murdered by Naritsugu. Then Sir Doi shows a woman with arms, legs and tongue severed by Naritsugu and she writes with her forearm a request to Shinza to slaughter Naritsugu and his samurai. Shinza promises to kill Naritsugu and he gathers eleven other samurais and plots a plan to attack Naritsugu in his trip back to the Akashi land. But the cunning samurai Hanbei Kitou that is responsible for the security of his master foresees Shinza's intent. Shinza decides to go with his samurai through the mountain, where they find the hunter Koyata that guides them off the mountain and joins the group. Now the thirteen men... Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
This movie has an immense amount of depth for a movie of it's genre. There are many things about this movie that motivated me to rank it as I did. Starting with the acting - from the main characters, their roles, words, facial expressions, movements - done with such sincerity. Honest, real emotions. It gives you a glimpse into a world where honor is defined and mutated by the hearts of men. One Samurai, honors and views his position as a guardian of the people, able to see, comprehend, and act upon injustice. And the other Samurai? His heart is not towards the people, but has, as I've said mutated into an honor, that seemingly cloaked in the traditional honor of serving and protecting his lord, is really mutated into a self-serving, blinded existence that could potentially be his downfall. Who knows? Who triumphs in this movie? Be prepared to be surprised on many levels! The swordplay is bar none in my opinion. The landscape genuine, with fantastic cinematography. As many movies in this genre, there are moments of 'over-the-top' exclamatory remarks that often typify a Shogun/Samurai flick, this just keeps reminding you that an American producer with more eye for gore than plot is NOT at the helm of this ship. This movie has it all for me. It has a plot, a story line that will have you remembering the 7 Samurai, The Magnificent 7, and a little of the A-Team, but done so in a remarkable fashion, executed in a classical, raw, well orchestrated fashion. I will watch this again. I will undoubtedly see more to this movie then, than now. And that will be a treat unto itself. If you are a fan of the Samurai/Shogun genre of film. Watch this. pop the popcorn or whatever, but don't drink too much because you will not want to get up, even for a bathroom break on this one!
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