[JFF] The Last Ronin 最後の忠臣蔵 (2010) – Japan

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This is a rare cinematic gem. Very few films will be like The Last Ronin. It is a kind of film where the director gives the audience plenty of time and space to allow us to get a feel for what is happening and the message that he wanted to express. It is essentially at its very core a film about the true spirit of the samurai, the emphasis of one’s honor, the essence of duty and the importance of keeping a promise. In a true warrior spirit, the film does not try to be melodramatic to affect or connect to the audience, but rather allowing us to absorb the situation, the atmosphere and embrace the unwritten code of the warrior’s way. It is certainly not a film for everyone, with its ultra slow pacing and with not much really happening, the film may well frustrate even the most patience of viewers. However, those who wait will be able to reap the rewards afterwards. Almost forgotten to mention, Nanami Sakuraba is truly stunning and beautiful in her role and is most certainly an actress for the future. Ultimately, The Last Ronin is a perfect example of executing the “show-not-tell” principle to maximum effect. All in all, The Last Ronin rewards those who sit and watch with patience and endurance and slowly by the end of the film, the audience is gained with extra knowledge knowing the puzzle is solved and most likely will finish off with a smile on their face. The Last Ronin takes us on a rare cinematic journey that allows the viewer to observe, understand and finally embrace the true meaning of being a samurai. A truly unique cinematic experience…

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Neo rates it 8/10.

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