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SubZero61992
December 20th, 2004, 04:45 PM
Does anyone have comments or opinions on this movie?
I am short of time at the moment so my comment will be posted soon.

As a short comment-
Acting-10
SOund- 10
Understanding- 10
Story- 9 ( Samurai were the enemies at the period of the time set)
Visual Effects- 10.9

Miriamele
December 20th, 2004, 05:29 PM
I really, really loved this movie when I saw it in the theatre and as soon as it was out on DVD my husband and I picked it up. Since then we've watched it many times again.

Although I know it was a hollywood-ized version of Japanese history, I loved it all the same. I think all the actors did a fabulous job, the costumes, cintematography, and music were all beautiful. The love story was satisfyingly subtle which is rare in movies.

There is lengthy thread on this movie already that was started a year ago when it came out, SubZero. You can check it out here. (http://www.sffworld.com/forums/showthread.php?t=7106&highlight=samurai)

SubZero61992
December 20th, 2004, 06:20 PM
I was amazed because on the DVD I bought it had a history channel episode called History vs. Hollywood involving the Last Samurai.

Can you believe that one of the only things they found that wasn't accurate about the movies real setting was that when the samurai formed the rebellion ( in real time when Japan was have modern weapons imported) they were already hated and feared by common people long before?
I had always thought the samurai was peaceful, and I still like to believe that some were good but one of the Bushido rules were Courtesy, and it threw me off when they said people feared them.


But I love the deleted scene "The Beheading" because it showed more about Ujio. It showed who and what the samurai were like.

And Ujio is my favorite character.
Gunshot wounds, slashes, and stab wounds couldn't stop him, but against the gatling guns, it was an un-fair battle.

Kingu
December 21st, 2004, 06:46 AM
I didn't like the movie for the good reason that it is based on the image of the good samurai , filled with honor and defender of the weak. In reality, those guys were just a bunch of armed people who had the right to kill every commoner who was damaging his "honor" simply by touching or looking at them. They put a lot of people to the grave just for their pleasure.

Better be suspicious about every movie that exploits the theme of the "bushido" something written to serve the propaganda of a glorious japanese middle-age; reality was very different than what Japanese officials want us to believe

SubZero61992
December 21st, 2004, 08:36 AM
Well, I think there was some good samurai.

But as I said, it surprised me when it said people were afraid of them.

saintjon
December 22nd, 2004, 10:21 PM
Doesn't it strike you as odd then that the peasants were so happy when the samurai came back to their village? that was one of many moments of this movie when I smelled the unpleasant odour of male bovine excrement, to speak politely. I didn't really know much about samurai until I started reading about them but it sure wasn't surprising that they were hated/feared when you figure that they can exterminate 90% of the population on a whim.

It was a fun movie to watch but there was so much rampant stupidity. I would have liked the movie 10 times more if it wasn't such whiteboy wish fulfillment. There is NO reason that Tom Cruise's character should have been able to draw Ukio. If they'd have wanted to tell a honest to god good story and win me over he should've only barely fought one of the lesser samurai to draw. I don't think Ujio should've ever been touchable for Tom Cruise's character.

Furthermore there is NO reason that Tom Cruise's character should be the guy who miraculously saves Japan. To top it off the whole title and concept of the movie is a joke, he was never a samurai at all or he would've killed himself, even if he'd gone to see the emperor he THEN would've killed himself. The movie would more aptly be called Another Ronin than the Last Samurai.

SubZero61992
December 22nd, 2004, 11:35 PM
Your opinion, SaintJon.

I found TOm Cruise's fight with the Ronin's interesting.
Did anyone ever catch the last ronin that Tom defeated and noticed that his head fell off when his body fell?

I found it intrigueing.

SubZero61992
December 22nd, 2004, 11:38 PM
To top it off the whole title and concept of the movie is a joke, he was never a samurai at all or he would've killed himself, even if he'd gone to see the emperor he THEN would've killed himself. The movie would more aptly be called Another Ronin than the Last Samurai.

I have to comment on that.
Kotsumoto said the way of the samurai didn't matter any more.
So technically Tom Cruise and the remaining samurai villagers could've of started their own paths to a new world.

Eurytus
December 23rd, 2004, 05:17 AM
There is NO reason that Tom Cruise's character should have been able to draw Ukio. If they'd have wanted to tell a honest to god good story and win me over he should've only barely fought one of the lesser samurai to draw. I don't think Ujio should've ever been touchable for Tom Cruise's character.

Furthermore there is NO reason that Tom Cruise's character should be the guy who miraculously saves Japan. To top it off the whole title and concept of the movie is a joke, he was never a samurai at all or he would've killed himself, even if he'd gone to see the emperor he THEN would've killed himself. The movie would more aptly be called Another Ronin than the Last Samurai.
For your first point I have to disagree to a certain extent.
There is a great deal of misinformation spread about the Samurai. The fact that the Katana is often presented as being able to slice through metal (and pretty much anything else) whilst western (especially medieval) swords are portrayed as inelegant, heavy bludgeons.
Total myth. Katanas were made for cutting flesh, and flesh only. As a result they were very good at it. But face someone is metal armour and then the Katana would be pretty ineffective.

But I digress. Allied with the mythic status of their weaponry is the mythic status of their actual abilities. There is no reason to suspect that a samurai would be way better than a western fighter. Yes they would be likely to be better given that they use melee weaponry far more than their western counterparts but for me the real wish fulfilment is displayed when a samurai is portrayed as some kind of uber-warrior.
If Cruise's character was well practiced with his sabre then there is no reason to suppose that he would not be able to draw one fight with a samurai.
When you are dealing with a contest in which first hit wins then anyone can lose a fight. No matter how good they are. Anyone can.

For the second point. How did Cruise's character miraculously save Japan? As far as I can see he didn't.
The samurai are still wiped out as far as I can see. Japan is to brace modernity. Japan was never really under threat.
So I can't see how he saves anything.

And unless I am mistaken he was not the Last Samurai of the title.
The head samuari was. So really that point is not relevant.

juzzza
December 23rd, 2004, 05:41 AM
Is samurai not the plural word too? I always read the title to mean the Last Samurai (collective) as in that last village of warriors?

Have to agree with Eurytus on the draw debate too. During that scene I think the Director made it look almost accidental, whilst at the same time was pushing the whole 'empty your mind' concept. B'sides, how many times did he lose to him and as a ration 100:1 is pretty poor odds if they ever had to fight for real... My money would be on Ukio.

Yea I think a lot of their ability was mysticism, not to mention that fact that most peasnats didn't carry a sword!!! No wonder they strutted around with an air of invincibility. I am sure there were some exceptional fighters during those times, who dedicated their lives to the sword and its use. But it's like fighters today whether they are boxers or UFC fighters, some are incredible stylists with skill and some are just hard men who don't give up and can take a lot of punishment. Real fights are rarely pretty to watch and don't last long.