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  • This story is as amazing as the other OVA's and the Kenshin series. True, plenty of fans have had their differences over the two. But I disagree with any disrespect given to this movie.

    This movie, compared to the first parts of the OVA (Trust and Betrayal for us pro-English/Japanese-handicapped folk) is closer in style and story to the Kenshin series. The animation is identical to the series though the voice acting cast is different since this movie predates the series by a few years.

    From the flashbacks to Kenshin's assassin days to the fact that he's fighting the same battles a decade later, we see that Kenshin's determination to kill with his sword in his former days will never allow his more peaceful side a chance to really be at ease. As in the series... Kenshin's victims, or rather their friends and family, dog Kenshin's every step with either ideas of revenge, making him feel guilty about his deeds, or forcing him to confront impetuous adversaries in order to make things right.

    Kenshin uses his reverse-blade sword to try to save himself and his opponents from deadly mistakes. But he finds out how hard it is to atone for such unspeakable bloodshed.

    This movie is a little easier on Kenshin's personal life than Trust/Betrayal, but attentive viewers will share in Kenshin's deep frustration when so many subverse elements ruin his chances to make amends.
  • rbverhoef22 January 2004
    I have never seen a single episode of the 'Rurouni Kenshin'-series, but I was fully able to enjoy this movie. I wasn't really sure what I could expect. I can say it was a very pleasant surprise. May be the story is not very good but there is so much more that is great that it didn't bother me. The story isn't bad either, it is pretty standard. It is about revenge, of course with some hidden secrets, and great samurais like Kenshin himself.

    The animation is perfect for a movie like this. The fighting sequences look great and powerful, almost like you're in the middle of the fight yourself. The opening sequence amazed me in every positive way possible. Only the way this movie looks makes it interesting and entertaining to watch. Like I said, I wasn't sure if I was going to like this movie, but I did. Even more than that.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    A brief summary of Kenshin for those of you who are coming into this without any background. During the days before Meiji era, Himura Kenshin was the leading assassin for the Ishin Shishi and was known as the Hitokiri Battousai. Using the god like speed of his Hiten Mitsurugi, he hacked his way through countless victims so that a new era could be established. After the new government had been moved into the seat of the power, and the shogun put behind bars, Kenshin retired from a life of killing and took up a Sakabatou (a reverse blade sword, where the blade is on the back and not the front) and decided to try and repent for all his murderous deeds.

    As any veteran of Rurouni Kenshin will tell you, Kenshin's past has a way of coming back to bite him. This movie is no exception. Playing out like an extra long filler episode, this movie tells the story of how back in Kenshin's Hitokiri days Kenshin killed another Hitokiri named Gatotsu. Now, in the peaceful days of the Meiji government, Gatotsu's two brothers in arms (not biological brothers, just friends really) are planning on overthrowing the government through violent revolution, and naturally Kenshin is the only one who can stop them.

    This movie had every reason to be good. First off the story isn't that bad, sure it's a little boring, but it allows for plenty of dramatic moments where Kenshin finds his past coming back to haunt him, and plenty of innocents are killed for peoples dying dreams (a reoccurring theme in Kenshin). The film manages to include most of the major characters, Yahiko, Sanosuke, Kaoru and even the doctors two grand children make appearances, and the soundtrack is pretty damn good.

    Unfortunately, the plot line never quite realizes its full potential, and aside from a decent (but still disappointing) action scene in the middle the movie, the entire film is incredibly poorly animated (which doesn't make sense as this was actually made after the series ended...so shouldn't the animation have been better?)While Shigure is a mildly tragic figure, i found his two cohorts far more interesting in their evil ways, and found myself wondering how this man had inspired an entire rebellion. Many people will complain about the reoccurring flashbacks to Kenshin's battle with Gatotsu. I myself, didn't mind these at all, in fact I rather enjoyed them.

    Perhaps my real biggest gripe with this movie is just the animation. It's not really bad, but for fans who have seen the Kyoto arc, or seen any of the ova's, they will find these fights barely watchable. I really don't understand why the animation was so bad in this movie, and i don't think I'll ever get over it. I mean how cool would it have been to see TV Kenshin (you know, the one who says 'Oro')fight in fluid animation? To end with I'd like to note some interesting facts about this movie. First off, Nobuhiro Watsuki didn't write this story, I think he was busy on the Manga or on GUN BLAZE WEST! but this was based on an idea he had...that's all (which explains why the movie just doesn't seem to flow as well as Watsuki's other ideas).

    Secondly, there has also been a lot of speculation as to when this movie takes place. Saito's in it, and the two adversaries are cordial to each other so it must take place after episode 28 of the anime, but right after that episode Kenshin leaves for Kyoto, and while in Kyoto he seals away the Hitokiri inside himself forever (and he doesn't use either of his two new techniques, Amakeki Ryu Sho Sein and Amekeki Ryu Ryu something - i honestly can't even remember their names) but at the end of this movie he goes back into Hitokiri mode. Honestly, would it have killed them to make the anime fit into series? In a perfect world, this movie would have been written entirely by Watsuki and told an untold chapter of Kenshin's life that we never knew about. Sure it probably would have been Kenshin's past coming back for him, but it would have probably had an all new twist...instead of the same old same old.

    If your a Kenshin fan, you'll have to see this. But if you like Kenshin for it's well animated fights, keep moving. (It's a 6/10 if you love Kenshin, and a 4/10 if you watch it by itself, yeah it's that disappointing)
  • I say this is more of an extended episode of the series, and the beginning looked like one of the filler episodes of the show. And the story is not much except more of Kenshin's past back to haunt him, and a conspiracy going on about their new friends they meet at the beginning is stirring up. I would say the animation is very good, the effects okay, and more background of Kenshin also. But not all of the characters are there, only a few others make an appearance but others don't. Just the four, Kenshin, Kaoru, Yahiko, Sano, and oh, at least Saitou is back. That's good to see, but you seem fight only a few times, and I also like the poem or haiku in it, and it goes something like this, "the bluest sky is infinitely high and crystal clear." That is something I'll never forget, very beautiful. Recommended to the fans of the show.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This was a decent movie. Probably not as great as the best episodes from the original show (Particularly those from the Kyoto story arc) or as the Trust & Betrayal OVAs, but it does make justice to the anime series in which it was inspired, with a good story and more than decent animation. This movie seems like an attempt to of two different aspects of "Rurouni Kenshin": The dark and dramatic (if not tragic) elements of Kenshin Himura's violent past (shown in the Trust & Betrayal OVAs) with the much more light-hearted and comical television series. Fortunately, the result is much better than one would expect, having a convincing balance between the comic relief and the seriousness.

    Even when this movie isn't perfect, it is still very well done, and I would recommend it to any "Rurouni Kenshin" fan.
  • The americans may made animation commercial, but the japanese made it right. As a great addition to the Rurouni Kenshin series.

    Rurouni Kenshin in itself is one of the best japanese animation series ever, combining history, adventure and awe-inspiring animation. The movie is also the same.

    Kenshin meets a former assassin like himself and befriends him. Later, he realizes how different their paths were taken after they "retired". The showdown at the end is worth the movie. Fans will not be disappointed since most of their favorite characters will make an appearance.
  • The Japanese are the best animators in the world and this anime film proves it.

    Rurôni Kenshin: Ishin shishi e no Requiem (1997)starts back in the days of the Meji revolution when Kenshin was the feared Hitokiri Battōsai.

    Hitokiri Battōsai kills in battle a samurai called Takatsuki Gentatsu. Takatsuki's death is witnessed by his comrade Shigure Takimi.

    The film then shifts to the year is 1879, and Japan is finally at peace, starting to modernize, and has opened its borders to the outside world.

    Miss Kaoru, Kenshin, Sanosuke and Yahiko arrive at Yokohama by train for a sight-seeing tour.

    There they witness a fight between some European sailors and a man called Shigure Takimi. Kenshin helps Shigure fight off the sailors. Later Kenshin and Shigure acquaint themselves.

    Shigure Takimi has secretly sworn to avenge his fallen comrade by a Restoration movement to overthrow the current Japanese Government, and he has amassed some weapons and recruits for that purpose.

    Toki who is the sister of the slain Takatsuki Gentatsu is deeply in love with Shigure Takimi. When things begin to get out of Toki's hands she reaches out to seek Kenshin's help. Kenshin promises to unite Toki and Shigure, but will that promise be fulfilled?

    Watch this exciting film to find out.

    Note: this anime contains scenes of violence so I do not recommend this film for children and persons under the age of 18.
  • I love this movie. Though I can only understand about half. Takatsuki Gentatsu is the greatest character, he shouldn't have died, Shigure should have at the beginning. But then there would be no movie, so I guess Gentatsu had to die. The music is terrific, by far this is a wonderful movie, anyone interested in anime, especially Rurouni Kenshin fans should see this movie. And if anyone has a good translation, e-mail me please.

    Thanks, and "Aozora wa doko made mo takaku tsunde nakereba nara ne." ~Takatsuki Gentatsu~ (the best character ever!)
  • r-beagle30 March 2002
    When I saw this film I had no idea that it was a series, in fact I had never even heard of the film, I just caught it at a friends house. I was utterly shocked at the shear quality of it, the action is superb, and while the actual story isn't great (nor is it bad by any means) the messages and thoughts it provokes are very impressive (i wont go into them here). As I said I had never heard of this before, I knew nothing about the film, but unlike many anime the story doesn't get confusing and you get a good feel for the history of the characters. The only bad thing that I can say about the film is the quality of the animation isn't as good as I've seen, but this doesn't really detract from the enjoyment, especially when you get dragged into the story. Top stuff.(8/10).
  • luckyazarcon31 July 2020
    Just calling out the goof section. After kenshin got the cross shaped scar he didn't immediately vow not to kill. He fought and killed in the frontlines instead of hiding in the shadows as a hitokiri. After they won the war it is only then that kenshin vowed not to kill. The opening scene is after he got the scar but it is still during the war.
  • I judge movies and tv shows based on its emotional impact on me, and needless to say this was one of the most beautiful experiences I have ever had with a movie.. Just plain outright amazing, a very impactful and inspirational film.. Just when I'd thought I've seen everything from Rurouni Kenshin, I find this movie.. The soundtrack was outwright beautiful and heartwarming, the animation was second to none, and the fighting sequences were some of the best I've seen from any Rurouni Kenshin overall. I am so glad this film lived up to my expectations, definitely a must watch.
  • This movie was well executed. This, since it is really a puzzle piece that fills in the gaps left in the animated series Rurouni Kenshin, will be viewed by some as a bit weak, and only for fans. However, as a stand alone movie it is also quite good. The artwork follows more of the style of the series. The movie has its own storyline, but some see it as a lot of flashback. It is certainly an action oriented movie, and the ending is a bit of a twist. Also, the movie follows the shonen theme of the manga with the shojo undertones that makes Kenshin what it is. The movie is definitely worth seeing at least once, even for those who are not fans of foreign animation. This shows just how well a movie can pull all the elements together from a series and blend them with (at the time) high quality animation and quality voice acting.
  • Samurai X the Motion Picture is a good movie but it wasn't as well done as Rurouni Kenshin the T.V. series. I watched this before the T.V. series, and was a bit confused as to who everyone was. This isn't really a problem and is easily fixed by watching the movie. An annoying aspect of the movie is the showing of one flashback seven times. Seeing the same scene over and over really got boring. The animation didn't seem as good as the T.V. series either, but was still pretty good.

    I gave Samurai X the Motion Picture an 8, but it's really more of a 7.5. It's a good anime, but nothing seemed to make it special.
  • Maybe good if your a fan of the series. But for my part, Reminisence is the Real Kenshin film. It has much better animation and sound, but this film is older so you have to take that into consideration. Even apart from that I think Reminisence was deeper and touched me In a way this film never could. The fight scenes are stylised and boreing, the characters dont seem convinceing, the story is ok but could have been better executed. All in all, not a bad film, but it didnt stand out. Average 6(10)
  • Let me start first by complimenting several things. This movie was, frankly, beautifully drawn. Every shot was full of such amazing detail that at times it became difficult to tell the difference between the animated and the actual footage that appears randomly throughout the film.

    The sword fighting was very cool as well.

    And that's about all I can say that is positive about "Samurai X". I watched the English-dubbed version, something I would never do normally except a friend of mine who loved the movie insisted. I feel that they may have hired some of the worst voice actors ever to speak these lines. Almost anything said by the main character came off as sounding like he was an idiot or reading off a page. It wasn't just Kenshin who suffered from this ailment. It seemed that many of the characters could not speak a believable sentence if their lives depended on it.

    The characters themselves were another huge problem. With Kenshin I just couldn't buy his motives. The movie went on and on and on trying to prove to him that killing was not the way to do things. He continues to think this way throughout, however, and his utter lack of character development made his "suck"-meter inflate beyond all expectations.

    The cast seemed to leave suddenly at random points. For example his "mentor" who we see for a mere 5 minutes, vanishes entirely from the story. Why didn't Kenshin get a better character? Because he, as well as everyone else, was horribly underdeveloped. It ended up that I couldn't care who lived and died and spent much of my time awaiting the next sword fight.

    The fighting was frequent and bloody, a good combination for a movie whose script was rotten. This and the amazing imagery was "Samurai X"'s saving graces because it was severely lacking in so many parts. The story was simple, and simply predictable, another one of the things in the movie that revolted me.

    I wish that the talented artists who brought this alive could apply their skill to something worthwhile, such as a sequel to "Noir"...