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  • While the Ichikawa Raizo version of Nemuri was known for his ruthlessness and womanizing, the Tamura version here is a "saint" by comparison. Because in this Tamura version, Nemuri even uses his own money to compassionately redeem a prostitute who suffers from terminal tuberculosis. Far from the ruthlessness of the Raizo version, here Nemuri seems so different in character that one wonders if the original author Shibata Renzaburo had anything to do with it.

    Although in all fairness to the other version, even Raizo's Nemuri had him making an annual pilgrimage to his Mother's grave to pay his respects, his reverence. Here in Tamura's version, we see a poignant scene where Kyoshiro's Mother has expired, and the child (at that time) has to bury her by himself.

    A surprise here is a different take at Nemuri's distinctive Sword technique, the Engetsu. It is confirmed here that he needs the actual Moonlight in order to make his technique work. So his enemy attacks on a moonless night. How Nemuri escapes that situation is up to you to see by watching the movie.
  • Europeans don't know much about Asian states, especially the Japanese period of national isolation. I have seen this film so many times, and still feeling affection to return. It is an audiovisual light into Sakoku period. Everything is so interesting: conversations, acting, art, sounds, etc.