30 November 2009 | alisoncolegrooveq
Moving and compelling period film
Beautiful, moving, wonderful direction and costuming. This film, set in the Edo period, really captures the hardship that all facets of society experienced throughout this turbulent time in Japanese history. A sweet romantic story balanced by the harsh and unjust cruelty that was metered out by corrupt authorities. A simple story on honour and justice. The director, Tetsuo Shinohara, shows a wonderful maturity in his direction, with pace and beauty moving the story along without wallowing in too much sentimentality. A beautiful balance of all the elements of film making; performances and direction, score, editing, script and art direction come together make this film a captivating experience. Rena Tanaka and Noriyuki Higashiyama are wonderfully poised and moving in their performances, both beautiful and completely look the part. I was so moved and completely drawn into this film. Beautiful ideas, beautiful images, moving score and above all, it comes together to tell a story that is a timeless classic. Mesmerizing.