Japanese film-making cares very little about happy endings, feel-good movies, or "chic" flicks. So don't look for them here. But they do have emotional power. The pain of Musashi, in the first film of the Trilogy, is excruciating when he is hunted, starved, and finally suspended by rope from a pine for days upon returning home from a long battle, and the torment of Otsu in the second film, as she spend years waiting near a bridge that Musashi might one day cross. Excellent acting....very powerful performances.
These films' underlying themes are all about morality. All the characters are heroes. Otsu is long-suffering while loyal to her true love. Musashi is a soul searching warrior. While he spends years refining his swordmanship and seeking honor and fame, she waits hopefully that someday his early promise of a peaceful life with her is realized. I think she ends up a virgin who has been told twice by Musashi that he loves her. Unless I've totally missed the point, these characters are role models. Kurosawa portrays them as what is best in the collective Japanese character. Highly moral views. The women are virgins and the men are swordsmen without defeat. Interesting, huh?
Musashi acquires a reputation as a fighter, but he is frequently instructed that his fighting prowess is not an end in itself and is not the path of a true Samurai. He travels a long road lasting three films to find it. In the end, one Samurai is dead and one is alive. What the surviving Samurai attains is the question I ask.Read more ›
First, the "darkness. Read more