Samurai X - The Motion Picture (Rurouni Kenshin)
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Product Description The war against the Tokugawa Shogunate ended years ago. But there are some who are not happy with the outcome. Shigure Takimi watched his friends and family get slashed down in the name of freedom and prosperity. Now he and a band of desparate rebels have sworn to settle one final score. Only one man stands in their way: Rurouni Kenshin. Will the former assassin take up his sword to fight again? When Shigure discovers Kenshin's true identity and his fight becomes a personal vendetta, the young hero will have no choice. Amazon.com Although it boasts plenty of sword fights, martial arts combat, and odd, orange blood, Samurai X offers deeper and more sensitive characterizations than typical anime samurai epics. Based on the manga by Noboru Watsuki, the film centers on questions about the nature of Japanese society during the years following the Meiji Restoration in the late 19th century. Kenshin Himura and his friends Kaoru, Sanosuke, and Yahiko seem like an ordinary, slightly goofy quartet. But red-haired Kenshin is an expert swordsman; tall, lanky Sanosuke, a martial arts master; adolescent Yahiko, a samurai-in-training. Kaoru fills the role of outspoken anime heroine. An ugly encounter with some drunken British sailors introduces Kenshin and his friends to the noble Takimi Shigure and lovely Toki Takatsuki. Shigure leads a group opposed to the Meiji government, which they believe is corrupting Japanese culture, and his ill-conceived attempt at rebellion brings him into conflict with Kenshin. A key fighter in the Restoration, Kenshin received scars on his soul that mark him more decisively than the X on his cheek; he weeps for the needless bloodshed he helped to unleash. Director Hatsuki Tsuji builds subtle visual patterns of downward motions--falling tears, fluttering bamboo leaves, the deadly stroke of a sword, Kenshin's spectacular leaps--to create a film with an unusually satisfying resolution. Not rated; suitable for ages 14 and up for violence. --Charles Solomon