Ended on 7/13/2006

HIDDEN BLADE -  (unrated)

2004 - Japan - Japanese (with English subtitles) - 132 minutes - Tartan Films

Directed by: Y˘ji Yamada

Featuring: Masatoshi Nagase, Takako Matsu, Hidetaka Yoshioka, Min Tanaka, Tomoko Tabata

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Following the acclaimed Oscar nominee, THE TWILIGHT SAMURAI, HIDDEN BLADE is the middle film in Japanese master Yoji Yamada's samurai trilogy. Based on the writings of Shuuhei Fujisawa and again set end of the Japan's medieval Edo period as modernity is just beginning to undercut the centuries old Edo clan traditions. In HIDDEN BLADE we find Munezo (Masatoshi Nagase, Mystery Train), a low level samurai, playing out Yamada's carefully wrought and deeply moving themes as he is caught between the dictates of his caste and clan and his hopes for personal happiness.

"Looks and feels more like a John Ford western than any other Asian film I've ever seen...evokes the cream of the FordľAnthony MannľBudd Boetticher prairie dramas" Michael Atkinson, Village Voice

"Both epic and intimate, this impassioned samurai drama is for anyone who's ever watched a movie and muttered - They just don't make 'em like they used to"
Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News

"Tranquil, touching, and, in its climactic sword fight, excitingly real."
Owen Gliberman, Entertainment Weekly

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