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Ron Beaubien
15th November 2003, 09:43
Hello,

If you have Windows Media Player installed you can watch Tom Cruise teach NBC's Katie Couric how to use a Japanese sword:

http://www.msnbc.com/news/992691.asp?0ql=c7p

Talk about the blind leading the blind.

Regards,

Ron

Pete Knox
15th November 2003, 11:05
I was unable to play the video, as the site said it "was not available at this time." Perhaps that is a good thing. ;)

hyaku
18th November 2003, 05:55
Damn media.

Just got a call from Tokyo NHK. Tom Cruise has a lot to answer for. They are asking to interview me to do a Gaijin Samurai thing!

They got my name and number of a Nippon Budokan Meibo. Is nothing sacred?

Anyone had dealings with Saito producer?

Hyakutake Colin

Mekugi
18th November 2003, 06:20
Tell them it's a damned movie.

-R


Originally posted by hyaku
Damn media.

Just got a call from Tokyo NHK. Tom Cruise has a lot to answer for. They are asking to interview me to do a Gaijin Samurai thing!

They got my name and number of a Nippon Budokan Meibo. Is nothing sacred?

Anyone had dealings with Saito producer?

Hyakutake Colin

Rogier
18th November 2003, 07:25
ask a hefty fee..... they'll stop bothering you..

El Guapo-san
18th November 2003, 12:13
Here's a transcript:

KC: "We're here live with Tom Cruise, star of the new action film The Last Samurai."

TC: (bows)

KC: "So, how was filming your new movie Tom?"

TC: "Great. I learned a lot of things about Bushido. It has replaced Scientology in my life. Wanna see me handle my sword?"

KC: (blushes) "Why yes (looks off camera), why not?"

TC: "Now see, in the movie, they fight modernisation, which they think is going to ruin traditional culture and values. (picks up sword from off camera) Sort of like how television ruins things."

KC: (unnerved) "So how does that sword work, uhm, Tom?"

TC: "Well, you put it over your head, shout the reason why you are attacking someone, say for example "Your decreasing ratings are a dishonor to your diamyo, Les Moonves", and then swing at them so" (clumsily wheels sword over head and into KC, beheading her)

KC: (drops bleeding to floor, headless)

TC: "OH! I have dishonored the Screen Actors Guild, I must disembowel myself immediately.....Watch my movie! GGgggggrrrrccchhhh"

J. Vlach, Amsterdam

David T Anderson
18th November 2003, 18:46
Originally posted by El Guapo-san
Here's a transcript:

TC: "Great. I learned a lot of things about Bushido. It has replaced Scientology in my life. Wanna see me handle my sword?"

El Guapo-san, you big tease... I actually read this sentence and believed it for a second. But having Cruise behead Katie Couric and commit seppuku was just too good to be true... Damn you! :D

Earl Hartman
18th November 2003, 20:46
Ah, yes, another know-nothing movie star pontificating about the grace, elegance, integrity and honor of Ye Olde Nippon that he learned all about making a d**m movie.

BARF!!

Tea Guy
18th November 2003, 21:22
To put it bluntly, actors like him make me sick. I can't stand hearing an actor talking about how they can do such and such a martial art just because they were in a movie and had to train for it for a short while. I think it really ruins the reputation of martial arts and makes them seem like a cheap party trick that can't be taken seriously.

C. Sieg

ScottUK
18th November 2003, 23:42
I have posted this message in another thread, but the second link is not to be missed ... :D

------------------------

A few links, in case you haven't seen them:

The Last Samurai - IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/combined)

...and just in case you didn't see this (John L posted it some time ago), the real last samurai:

Real Samurai 01 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047478/board/flat/2689122?d=2689122#2689122)

Real Samurai 02 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/board/flat/2688896?d=2688896#2688896)

Look for 'jasonvorhees666666' and his posts.

By far the funniest thing since 'Bonsai Kitten'...

Tea Guy
19th November 2003, 00:50
....What the hell was that? Strange link.
That Jmagnolia guy's got some serious problems...

C.Sieg

Rogier
19th November 2003, 06:05
wow... that jmagnolia dude has really got to me...

I'm going to quit my job as an accountant and become a full time samurai... btw does that mean I can cut down peasants in the streets if they offend me??? :D :smilejapa

El Guapo-san
20th November 2003, 10:25
Tom Cruise as quoted on Japan Today:

"I am a Scientologist and I can strongly identify with the values of honor, loyalty and compassion. Those are wonderful things to aspire to in life."

Tom Cruise, extoling bushido the samurai code at a press conference in Tokyo Thursday to promote "The Last Samurai".

Well, there you have it. The union of the "All your money belong to us" crowd and the "so Billy, do like to watch gladiator movies?" crowd.

Barf, vomit, bllleeeeeeccchhhhh.

J. Vlach, Amsterdam

StanLee
20th November 2003, 12:16
Originally posted by ScottUK
I have posted this message in another thread, but the second link is not to be missed ... :D

------------------------

A few links, in case you haven't seen them:

The Last Samurai - IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/combined)

...and just in case you didn't see this (John L posted it some time ago), the real last samurai:

Real Samurai 01 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047478/board/flat/2689122?d=2689122#2689122)

Real Samurai 02 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/board/flat/2688896?d=2688896#2688896)

Please tell that we on ebudo aren't that nerdy or sad individuals...

I say we call to arms against their forum! There's one thing talking and studying about japanese martial culture, but practicing it is another.

Look for 'jasonvorhees666666' and his posts.

By far the funniest thing since 'Bonsai Kitten'...

StanLee
20th November 2003, 12:19
Originally posted by ScottUK
I have posted this message in another thread, but the second link is not to be missed ... :D

------------------------

A few links, in case you haven't seen them:

The Last Samurai - IMDb (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/combined)

...and just in case you didn't see this (John L posted it some time ago), the real last samurai:

Real Samurai 01 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0047478/board/flat/2689122?d=2689122#2689122)

Real Samurai 02 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0325710/board/flat/2688896?d=2688896#2688896)

Look for 'jasonvorhees666666' and his posts.

By far the funniest thing since 'Bonsai Kitten'...


Please tell that we on ebudo aren't that nerdy or sad individuals...

I say we call to arms against their forum! There's one thing talking and studying about japanese martial culture, but practicing it is another.

monkeyboy_ssj
21st November 2003, 12:15
Luckily for all you guys I AM a samurai, so any questions welcomed...Apart from the pony tail on top of my bald patch, I'm a bit touchy about that.

Gas hoe

Rogier
21st November 2003, 12:18
cool.... so are you allowed to kill peasants if they offend you??

monkeyboy_ssj
21st November 2003, 12:21
Originally posted by Rogier
cool.... so are you allowed to kill peasants if they offend you??

Only if they touch my broom handle...then I will challenge them to a duel at dawn underneath the slide in the park.

Gus hu

Mekugi
21st November 2003, 23:36
Are you paid in sea-salt for your services?



Originally posted by monkeyboy_ssj
Luckily for all you guys I AM a samurai, so any questions welcomed....

monkeyboy_ssj
24th November 2003, 09:24
Originally posted by Mekugi
Are you paid in sea-salt for your services?

No, I accept the usual fee, 10,000 ryo...I do the deed and then carry on, pushing my son, Digaro in his cart.

Cheers

Ronin055
28th November 2003, 15:43
The best part of those talks on the other board.

The part where he breaks down and says .. and I quote.."god I hate you guys"

or in the second posting where the real samurai defends questions about his age and job status with the defiant words "im not a kid,.. Im 28.. and I do have a job.. and pretty soon Ill have my own place too."

Oh yea.. both of those were office chair ejection seats for me.. ROFLMAO !!

ScottUK
28th November 2003, 18:27
Being a real life samurai does that mean when working at the office and you get caught Xeroxing your butt cheeks that you'll have to impale yourself on your own sword for the dishonor? ...or...


Recently I heard the saying: "Often, silence is the best answer". I will refrain from the wisdom in that statement by calling you an idiot.

Fantastic. Didya know that he's still replying to the 'Seven Samurai' board (see link above). I'm gonna invite him over...

Back in a while....

Mekugi
29th November 2003, 07:46
<bump> coming out on the 6th in my corner of the world. Rumor has it that Tokyo is already waching special previews.

-Russ

leoboiko
2nd December 2003, 21:40
"I am a Scientologist and I can strongly identify with the values of honor, loyalty and compassion. Those are wonderful things to aspire to in life."

Tom Cruise, extoling bushido[...]


Scientology is so like Bushido... (http://www.xenu.net)

Iain
3rd December 2003, 19:41
Originally posted by Rogier
I'm going to quit my job as an accountant and become a full time samurai... btw does that mean I can cut down peasants in the streets if they offend me??? :D :smilejapa

No, you have to move to the states if you want to do that...

shinwa
4th December 2003, 19:04
If he was genuinely touched by what he learned during the making of this movie, more power to him. If it leads to extensive study, right on.

hyaku
4th December 2003, 23:47
I happened to put on the TV yesterday to find a 1986 movie showing called The Colour of Money. Pual Newman, Mr Cruise etc.

He did some fancy twirling with a pool cue. Seeing it I thought "Hang on a minute, I have seen that before. It was of course on the link at the start of this thread. Of course its not a pool cue in his hand. But's its the same unmistakeable twirly wirly action.

Hyakutake Colin

Carlos Estrella
5th December 2003, 03:34
Originally posted by Iain
No, you have to move to the states if you want to do that...

Aw come on! I almost had my in-the-US Cuban cigar kicked out of my mouth by a Capoeistra in Vancouver doing a street demo while I was on a business trip. Never had to worry about THAT in the good ole' US of A!

(I kinda like the cut down the peasants thing tho... especially in the line at Starbucks <g>!)

Carlos

dingodog1
6th December 2003, 12:18
Guys, your senses of humour are for the most part beyond my comprehension and it makes it difficult for me to determine if you have any appreciation for "The Last Samurai". Do you find any redeeming qualities in the movie? Would you rather that Japanese culture was ignored by the media, films in particular or do you only think it should be depicted in documentary fashion only? I can tell by your comments that most, if not all of you have well developed grasps of the aesthetics of Japanese culture and martial arts but usually what attracts most people are the most obvious or exotic aspects. Initially I'd wager that you too were attracted by the swashbuckling and mystery that many westerners identify Japan and it's Samurai legacy with. How do you think the movie could have been better; are there producers, directors and actors that you felt would have been more faithful and effective depicting this era? While the movie is not the greatest movie in the world, I did enjoy it, the scenery was beautiful and an effort was made to transmit the Samurai ethos and sense of loss due to the ending of that age. I particularly enjoyed the lines where they spoke of man's ability to choose up until the point where his destiny is revealed and also the poetry composition and how he was frustrated until the moment of his death and the end of his poem appeared, effortlessly. I look forward to hearing your responses.

Mekugi
6th December 2003, 13:48
DUUUDE....

I just got cable and I was watching "Color of Money" with my wife and I thought that exact same thing, with Warren Zevon singing "Werewolves of London".

Didya see the part where he "cut" with the side of the pool table...

was it there that it clicked? sppoooookkky...

-R

Originally posted by hyaku
I happened to put on the TV yesterday to find a 1986 movie showing called The Colour of Money. Pual Newman, Mr Cruise etc.

He did some fancy twirling with a pool cue. Seeing it I thought "Hang on a minute, I have seen that before. It was of course on the link at the start of this thread. Of course its not a pool cue in his hand. But's its the same unmistakeable twirly wirly action.

Hyakutake Colin

David T Anderson
6th December 2003, 14:50
Originally posted by dingodog1
Do you find any redeeming qualities in the movie?

Yes, there are many good parts in this movie...I just found that the overwrought tone of the whole story, and acting and music drowned out the subtlety of the background and the many good bits in the film...just as you can take a grocery cart full of good food and turn it into a lousy meal.

I'm going to see this again on Sunday and try to sort out what I feel went wrong with it, at least for my taste.

dingodog1
6th December 2003, 23:42
I viewed it again today and enjoyed it though I admit I was leaning towards the credits at the end. Does anyone know who the character that was guarding Algren was. In the movie Algren called him Bob. Also, would someone post Ken Wantanabe's death poem in it's entirety?

Carlos Estrella
7th December 2003, 12:47
I sat in the theater and tried to ignore anything and everything I'd ever learned about Japan and anything I'd seen Tom Cruise (good and bad) in. Here is what I DIDN'T like:

- a little long
- musical score sometimes drowned out the action
- some plot elements weren't taken advantage of (I won't goive away the story - just go see it to understand)

To be honest, I really DID ENJOY the movie as a whole. Tom Cruise played the part of the distraught combat veteran well. Being Native, I appreciated how they portrayed both his angst concerning harming and killing my people and how they were shown to be noble warriors in the same vein (albeit with different means) as the samurai.

This was indeed a worthy film and the splendor, romanticism of the culture and the moral messages all contributed to a powerful film. Ken Watanabe performed admirably though the person playing his son seemed a little too much in the background to have been given the "honor" he is given later in the film).

Go see it and enjoy. Have an open mind. (ESPECIALLY ALL YOU E-BUDO SAMURAI EXPERTS... IT'S A M O V I E ! ! !)

Regards,

Carlos

ScottUK
7th December 2003, 15:23
For and on behalf of all Internet Samurai:

Can we learn a sword art from it? :)

Ronin055
7th December 2003, 18:05
For and on behalf of all Internet Samurai:

Nope.. its just a movie. But its a really fun movie with lots of very attractive features.

I for one loved it to the end. It was wonderful. Entertaining and moving. I felt that the love interest in the film played out perfectly. AND no cursing, and NO NUDITY. For once a movie that didnt need it, didnt have it. And there was still love in the film. Hmm now how did that happen without sex? Hollywood will surly fall apart now.

But seriously. It was perfect.

The samurai are doing what they have always done. Protesting injustice with their lives.

don
7th December 2003, 18:27
Originally posted by Ronin055
The samurai are doing what they have always done. Protesting injustice with their lives.

What injustice is that?

I'm curious as to who the Omura character is supposed to be. The same way that Hollywood would interpolate a love interest where there was none (and an American where there were the French...), I think they created a one-dimensional bad guy out of a fellow in a tight jam and created a romatic good guy out of a pretty arrogant recidivist.

The modernizers of Japan--Omura's character (Katsu Kaishu?) and Meiji, e.g.--were in desperate circumstances. They feared colonization on the one hand but the conservatives--these glorious samurai--refused to modernize as modernity meant foreign and "foreign" is the province of the devils. Saigo, Katsumoto in the flick, was pivotal in the successful restoration of the emperor to power, but he resented losing his samurai privileges and stipends. He even wanted to go to invade Korea and demand that they bow down to Meiji. Hollywood has romanticized him and pointedly forgotten those aspects of his character we today would rightly consider arrogant and nasty.

Ronin055
7th December 2003, 19:03
The Samurai were protesting the perceived injustice of the end of thier way of life.

Mr Omura was portrayed as self serving. His family owned the rail road and the rail road wouldnt work if the samurai didnt shut up. Thus the campaign against them.

The Emperor was Sympathetic to the ideals of the Samurai, but Felt pressured by the needs of the future.

NOW, knowing a touch of Japanese history, namely the Satsuma Rebelion, I know this isnt how it went down. But did that stop me from enjoying the film? No way. Again I will say I loved this film. I thougth it was especially beautiful.

There will never be a film that satisfies everyone. There will never be the historically accurate to a T film. If there were, it would be twenty nine hours long and boring as hell. But if you want to be entertained for two hours... well movies can do that.

don
7th December 2003, 19:27
Originally posted by Ronin055
... if you want to be entertained for two hours... well movies can do that.

Problem is, this entertainment informs people of how the world works. People who watch tv and movies have an exaggerated sense of how violent the US is, e.g.

"The Samurai were protesting the perceived injustice of the end of thier way of life."

Here you're speaking of the movie samurai, right?

"The samurai are doing what they have always done. Protesting injustice with their lives."

"Always done"...er, since we haven't always made movies, I assume your attributing to flesh and blood folk, celluloid qualities, hardly unusual in a country which elects actors as mayors, governors, senators, and presidents on seemingly little but their good looks (cf most recently, Herr Gropenfuhrer). For what REAL samurai did, see the excerpt from Conlan I posted at http://www.e-budo.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?threadid=23256.

Ronin055
7th December 2003, 20:19
Percieved injustice.

Yes I was talking about the characters in the film.

"what they have always done"

Im of the understanding, from various reading that I have done, http://www.whiteherondojo.net/usefulinfo.html (see books at top) that Samurai could and did use seppuku as a form of speaking out against a superiors decision.

Yes its a movie. I will disregard the insulting comment to our nation about whom we elect to office. And as a movie we should expect it to be entertaining. Want facts. turn on a history channel show, or better yet, read an encylopedia, or biography, or historical book. But in mainstream movie going, I would encourage you to look for entertainment. To look for to much is like swan diving in a mud puddle. You know it isnt deep enough and you surely will be dissapointed, or worse yet,hurt.

Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he is never dissapointed.

I expeced a movie that looked good and captured me for a while. It did that. It was a story. Like shogun. Not a factual account.

Perhaps some people who like this "fiction" will move forward and seek more "real" knowlage about this time, this event, and these people. Then there will be real success.

Ron Tisdale
8th December 2003, 15:10
I will disregard the insulting comment to our nation about whom we elect to office.

Why? and is it really insulting? Or just the truth? What other industrialized nation does the same (elects actors to major public office)? Ok, perhaps (if I remember correctly) Italy. Sniff.

RT

Ronin055
8th December 2003, 16:23
Why? first of all because of this, now the thread will turn to this, secondly because I dont care for polititions and most of the actor types have done a fairly good job.. see now the wrong debate begins. I think anyone should be elected to office, not CAREER polititions. The man in question has TONS of $$, so he doesnt have to worry about "pleasing" certin groups to make ends meet. Isnt that nice. And he cant me President, so he doesnt have a political adjenda. I think its in poor taste to slam the American people for using their freedom to vote for whom they choose. This is the system in action.

AND now this thread will turn totally away from the movie because of this.

Its just a movie, fiction, entertainment, thats all. Just a film. They never lied like private ryan and said it was so close to reality. They never said it contained historical characters and events. they just said it was a movie. Heck I dont even think they mentioned that it was the Satsuma rebellion.

don
8th December 2003, 19:09
Originally posted by Ron Tisdale
What other industrialized nation does the same (elects actors to major public office)? Ok, perhaps (if I remember correctly) Italy. Sniff.

Hi, Ron.

Yes. Cicciolina, the porn star who campaigned by slipping out a breast. The Jpn dailies loved her. Didn't we have one of those running against The Arnlold, too?

don
8th December 2003, 19:25
Originally posted by Ronin055
Why?...secondly because I dont care for polititions and most of the actor types have done a fairly good job.. see now the wrong debate begins.

DJM: Point taken.

I think anyone should be elected to office, not CAREER polititions.

DJM: Ditto.

I think its in poor taste to slam the American people for using their freedom to vote for whom they choose. This is the system in action.

DJM: I don't find criticism without the bounds of the cherished American ideal of freedom of speech. This, too, is the system in action.

AND now this thread will turn totally away from the movie because of this.

DJM: In all due humility, I think you and I have made this a much more interesting thread than Cruise teaching that little flourish of the BOKKEN that some date back to his handling of pool cues. Did we really want to stick with this?

Its just a movie, fiction, entertainment, thats all. Just a film.

DJM: As cynical as that is, I agree. But why do I have to dismiss it? Contrary to the hysterical warnings of the usual media critiques, movies actually lead folk to books and so this movie will probably do the same. In any case, it's proven a fair springboard for you and I to consider it more. Thank you.

Heck I dont even think they mentioned that it was the Satsuma rebellion.

DJM: I didn't hear it if they did.

DJM: By the way, I was surprised to find a book at Borders yesterday titled, "The Last Samurai." (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0471089702/qid=1070915000//ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl14/002-4315267-5674442?v=glance&s=books&n=507846) The cover jacket made no reference to the movie.

Earl Hartman
8th December 2003, 19:46
No nudity?

Damn.

Ron Tisdale
8th December 2003, 20:18
Hey, well thread drift happens. Its a part of e-budo.


And he cant me President, so he doesnt have a political adjenda.

I hear there's a movement a foot to repeal that particular provision (disallowing non-native born citizens from being president).

RT :)

don
8th December 2003, 20:19
Originally posted by Earl Hartman
No nudity?

Damn.

A shoulder, from the back.

The actress has only one name, Koyuki.

Ron Tisdale
8th December 2003, 20:21
California: The buzz: Constitution a small hurdle to big dreams
Sacramento Bee ^ | October 20, 2003 | Dan Smith


Posted on 10/20/2003 7:23:30 AM PDT by John Jorsett


Arnold Schwarzenegger hasn't been sworn in yet as California's next governor.

But as he threw his arms around President Bush on a stage last week in San Bernardino, the 56-year-old, Austrian-born bodybuilder-turned-movie-star-turned-governor-elect - who has always plotted his goals years ahead of time - must have wondered whether he was embracing his future.

The U.S. Constitution says only American-born citizens can be president. But Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, wants an amendment allowing foreign-born but longtime citizens - like Schwarzenegger - to run.

In a 2001 interview in the Vancouver Sun, Schwarzenegger, who already was talking about his ambition to be California governor, was asked whether he thought the presidency was out of reach. His response: "Well, you'd have to redo the Constitution. But they've had so many amendments that it's not really a problem."

Jesse Choper, a constitutional law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, chuckled at that response: "In more than 200 years now, there's been 27 amendments" out of hundreds of attempts. "And the first 10 were off the top, in the Bill of Rights."

Choper said he has no objection to the idea on the merits: "What's the big deal about being born in the United States?"

But if history is any guide, he said, "it is very difficult to amend the Constitution."

Of course, it's also very difficult to become governor in a recall election. This is only the second time it has happened in U.S. history.

from: http://freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1004349/posts?page=4

ghp
9th December 2003, 03:39
Saw it, liked it (with some exceptions).

Why can we watch "Superman" and never say "Hey, that can't really happen!" ?? But we watch this obvious fiction and act like it's suppose to be an historical recreation? [well, okay ... "Samurai" is closer to real life than "Superman"]

I liked the bokuto work -- the "whacka-whacka" sticks (as Meik Skoss calls it). Tom's tenouchi wasn't bad. I can envision someone comfortable with sabre to adapt to a different paradigm. This section really made me sit up and take notice.

I liked the cinematography and early Meiji uniforms (french kepis at the beginning) but note they transitioned to an 1880s type of uniform at the end of the film. The rifles looked to be the 1880s model. Would have enjoyed seeing more smoke obscuration for the final battle -- especially just before the first artillery barage.

I loved Billy Connolly! He made a great First Sergeant "Awrite yew barstads ...!" What was really great is that this famous Scottish comedian spoke in an Irish accent, so that he was understandable. If you've ever heard his LPs, you'd not understand a word. Is he Aberdonian or a Glaswegian? I think Aberdeen as I can usually understand those from Glasgow. Anyway, I half expected English subtitles when he spoke.

I liked Tom's fight choreography -- fighting to the end and getting the Red Armored Guy. Loved the body-checking throughout, and the short kick to the groin.

I HATED the following (1=very bad):

1. Emperor Meiji's attidude in front of Tom.

2. The "final salute" provided by the victors.

3. The girl "sausage lips". Did they use Botox injections in early Meiji? She reminded me too much of a modern woman placed in a "jidai gekki" film. Totally wrong look -- she reminds me of a Japanese Julia Roberts, whom I hate.

4. Ninjers.

5. Ninjer-swords/square tsuba.

4. Tom's "Can-Can Ryu" kicks.

As someone else already commented, I think the movie lasted 30 minutes too long (they can give those extra minutes to "Return of the King").


Originally posted by Ron Tisdale
What other industrialized nation does the same (elects actors to major public office)? Ok, perhaps (if I remember correctly) Italy. Sniff.Answer: Japan. Yokoyama "Knock" Governor of Osaka; previous occupation actor/commedian. Recently accused of fondling the backside of a female campaign supporter.

Earl -- I can confirm there is no nudity in this movie unless you count Tom's bosom. (o)(o) Thank God there was no "requisite nude bathing" scene a'la "Shogun". Entirely unrealistic.

Regards,
Guy

Leitbur
9th December 2003, 05:50
Well I just saw it with my brother today, and I feel it was quite a good movie. While I personally enjoy the study of history and culture, and I'm in school doing just that (my article on the cultural aspects of the Japanese sword made feature article on the front of the December issue of my college's anthropology club newsletter, yay) I also know that many Americans sadly do not, nor do they even care that much about what is outside the country. Popular culture is something that many Americans do talk about and enjoy though, so I think this movie, though not totally accurate, can give some sense to what the samurai and their code were in that era.

As I'm sure many of you who did watch it did, I paid close attention to the bokken work that Mr Cruise was doing within the movie, and it wasn't all that bad in my opinion. I've seen worse anyway.

While not totally historically accurate, I never went in expecting it to be such. What I simply hope the movie can do is bring those who are unfamiliar with, what I at least feel, are some of the more noble and positive aspects of the Japanese culture such as bushido, a better understanding and respect for that culture, and perhaps even move them to pursue it if they feel so inclined. If it can do that for some people, and help them find a better sense of their lives and peace of mind, then I think that is enough. It seems to have had that effect on my brother, as he is now quite motivated to learn Japanese, sorry, Nihon-go. I have never seen him so motivated and determined about something in an academic sense of learning like this, and so I'm quite grateful to this movie. Thank you for your time.

Eric Whims
"You don't need a reason to help people."

Earl Hartman
9th December 2003, 19:42
Guy:

Fill me in on the "unrealistic" nude bathing scene in Shogun. Are you talking about mixed bathing?

I heard a hilarious "culture clash" type story about this: in early Meiji, some Christian missionaries were scandalized to see men and women bathing naked together in a public bath (I don't know if the people were actually bathing in the same tub or if they were simply disrobing in plain view of each other). The missionaries insisted that this was immoral and that the people be separated.

The next time they went to the bath they saw that their wishes had been followed, to a point: the room had been divided down the center with a rope and men and women were disrobing on opposite sides of the rope.

Yeah, the chick doesn't look too pretty to me either, precisely for the reasons you state. I took one look at her picture and thought "Is this chick Japanese? What happened to her lips?"

Great minds think alike, obviously.

Well, the theater verson of RotK is almost 4 hours long, or so I have been told, which means that the extended DVD version will be even longer.

Kool. Can't hardly wait.

ghp
10th December 2003, 21:21
Hi Earl,
Fill me in on the "unrealistic" nude bathing scene in Shogun. Are you talking about mixed bathing? More or less I refer to the "erotic" bathing [small tub with nude vixen waiting her master ...]. I've no doubt both genders bathed at the same locations at osento, but I'm willing to bet my doughnut to your dollar that in early Edo period it wasn't de rigeur for one male and one female to frolic in the same small tub. I dunno -- it just struck me as gratuitous. Not at all like the bathing scenes in historical artwork.

Hmmmm .... mebbys I'm just envious. .... NO! of him, not her!! ;)

--Guy

Earl Hartman
10th December 2003, 21:33
Only one week until the King Returns, Guy.

ScottUK
10th December 2003, 21:57
The 'Pelennor Fields' scene - bring it on! :cool:

claughrun
10th December 2003, 22:05
Let me get this straight: you two are complaining about ample lips? And a resemblance to Julia Roberts? Please. She's a Japanese actress with full lips, not the kuchisake onna!

Earl Hartman
10th December 2003, 22:16
Well, I think Julia (or Ghoulia, as I call her) Roberts is ugly. Too tall, too skinny, angular face, unbelieveably huge mouth, teeth like a beaver. Nothing appealing there at all. But, whatever. YMMV.

I have only seen a few pictures of the actress in question and while I didn't immediately think "Wow, what a beast", she did look a little unusual for a Japanese. As Guy said, she has a very "modern" look that looked out of place.

But then, I have always preferred round-faced women. The aggressive angular look that seems to be all the rage now has never appealed to me.

Brian Owens
11th December 2003, 08:53
Originally posted by Earl Hartman
Fill me in on the "unrealistic" nude bathing scene in Shogun.
For one thing, if I recall, Mariko simply walks into the room, drops her robe, and steps into the tub.

In Japanese-style bathing one washes and rinses outside the tub, then gets into the tub for a relaxing soak. The Western custom of soaking in one's own dirt is disgusting.

In You Only Live Twice the same thing, only worse, happens, when James Bond and "Tiger" Tanaka are taking a bath with a bunch of bikini clad women lathering them up in the pool.

I liked the scene in Captive Hearts (a B-grade East-Meets-West WWII film) where the village elder's daughter-in-law is explaining carefully to the captured American flyer "Wash here, please. Not in tub. Then rinse." Then pantomimes dipping the bucket in the tub and pouring the water over one's self. "Then, okay to get in bath. Be careful. Very hot. Please enjoy your bath." She came across as very gracious and understanding of his lack of knowledge of Japanese customs. It was really beautiful.

Brian Owens
11th December 2003, 08:58
Originally posted by ghp
Hmmmm .... mebbys I'm just envious...of him... ;)
And what kind of envy would Freud call that? :D

Ron Tisdale
11th December 2003, 14:45
I really liked the movie 'Captive Hearts'.

Ron

tb055
11th December 2003, 16:19
I loved Billy Connolly! He made a great First Sergeant "Awrite yew barstads ...!" What was really great is that this famous Scottish comedian spoke in an Irish accent, so that he was understandable. If you've ever heard his LPs, you'd not understand a word. Is he Aberdonian or a Glaswegian? I think Aberdeen as I can usually understand those from Glasgow. Anyway, I half expected English subtitles when he spoke.

Billy Connolly is as Glaswegian as they come.

David T Anderson
11th December 2003, 17:48
Originally posted by Yagyu Kenshi
For one thing, if I recall, Mariko simply walks into the room, drops her robe, and steps into the tub.


IIRC [I watched Shogun on DVD a few weeks ago], Mariko and her maid enter the bathroom while Blackthorne is soaking...he is suitably embarrassed. Her maid helps her undress and Mariko sits decorously and gets water sponged over over her while Mariko explains that nakedness is 'not noticed' in the Japanese bath and was no big deal. [what a memory for detail, eh? :D ]

Doubtless Guy is right however...communal bathing might be normal in public baths and in the family home, but the likelihood of a single man and another man's nubile wife sharing a tub seems pretty small. I wish I could remember how the scene went in the book...I think it was a bit different.

Getting back to The Last Samurai...do you suppose that everybody in the village bathed in that outdoor spring, or just gaijin and Mrs. Japan of 1865? Wouldn't she have a tub at home?

Troy McClure
11th December 2003, 22:45
Originally posted by Ronin055
Perhaps some people who like this "fiction" will move forward and seek more "real" knowlage about this time, this event, and these people. Then there will be real success.
Very well put. That's how I see movies like these. They are never totally accurate, but they do a great job of introducing other cultures. There's no way we could learn everything that the Japanese went through during the late 1800's, but this did scrape the surface.

Some will be entertained, and that's enough for them. Others will be intrigued and will go elsewhere to learn more. Whether it's watching the Samurai special on the History Channel or reading a novel about the times, the movie has done it's job.

The movie did its job of getting the audience involved in the story. I enjoyed it just like I did Braveheart (another fictional historic epic).

dingodog1
11th December 2003, 23:14
In reference to Katsumoto's poem, I remember it going something like, "For one's life work to be spent searching for the perfect blossom...then something about a tiger followed by ...they are all perfect! It's a shame that's all I can "remember", and yet I know I still retained the impression that it is a beautiful, profound poem! At least I can draw solace from the fact that it has been several days since I saw it. Help!

dingodog1
11th December 2003, 23:20
Originally posted by Carlos Estrella
I sat in the theater and tried to ignore anything and everything I'd ever learned about Japan and anything I'd seen Tom Cruise (good and bad) in. Here is what I DIDN'T like:

- a little long
- musical score sometimes drowned out the action
- some plot elements weren't taken advantage of (I won't goive away the story - just go see it to understand)

To be honest, I really DID ENJOY the movie as a whole. Tom Cruise played the part of the distraught combat veteran well. Being Native, I appreciated how they portrayed both his angst concerning harming and killing my people and how they were shown to be noble warriors in the same vein (albeit with different means) as the samurai.

This was indeed a worthy film and the splendor, romanticism of the culture and the moral messages all contributed to a powerful film. Ken Watanabe performed admirably though the person playing his son seemed a little too much in the background to have been given the "honor" he is given later in the film).

Go see it and enjoy. Have an open mind. (ESPECIALLY ALL YOU E-BUDO SAMURAI EXPERTS... IT'S A M O V I E ! ! !)

Regards,

Carlos I'm sorry, what "honor" is the son given?

Carlos Estrella
13th December 2003, 23:27
The "honor" I referred to was fighting and dying a noble death vs. dying on the run or surrendering to be killed.

Maybe it's a romanticized notion to many here, but there is certain shame in the psyche of some when it comes to how one dies. In my personal experience, in law enforcement I had the unfortunate instance being where someone let himself be killed rather than surrender (those who know me personally on here know where and when). It's only a blurb on the news (sometimes) and often a nightmare for the officers involved... but it gives for a fleeting moment to the offender a shred of honor (for a few seconds of thought anyway).

Back to the movie... when you are dying and have no chance, do you go out like a lion of a lamb.. that's the choice Katsumoto's son made... at least IMHO. (Personally, I like making the OTHER guy die for HIS country, but I digress :-D )

FWIW

Carlos

dingodog1
15th December 2003, 07:06
:cool: This is cool. I think that his entire poem went like this:"A perfect blossom is a rare thing; You could spend your life looking for one. And it would not be a wasted life." For much of the movie he complains that he's not much of a writer and appears to be struggling to find just the right conclusion to his poem. It is only later as he is dying, out of time, that he actually realizes HE has been using "too many mind" and amidst the plum flower blossoms he views over Algrens shoulder his ending effortlessly becomes apparent as he whispers, "It is perfect...They are ALL perfect!" He then dies in Algren's arms as his enemies honor him as "The Last Samurai"! Then everyone but me is teary-eyed and choked up stumbling half-blinded to their cars! At least that's what I gather. :smilejapa

dingodog1
15th December 2003, 07:17
Originally posted by Carlos Estrella
The "honor" I referred to was fighting and dying a noble death vs. dying on the run or surrendering to be killed.

Maybe it's a romanticized notion to many here, but there is certain shame in the psyche of some when it comes to how one dies. In my personal experience, in law enforcement I had the unfortunate instance being where someone let himself be killed rather than surrender (those who know me personally on here know where and when). It's only a blurb on the news (sometimes) and often a nightmare for the officers involved... but it gives for a fleeting moment to the offender a shred of honor (for a few seconds of thought anyway).

Back to the movie... when you are dying and have no chance, do you go out like a lion of a lamb.. that's the choice Katsumoto's son made... at least IMHO. (Personally, I like making the OTHER guy die for HIS country, but I digress :-D )

FWIW

Carlos Hey I see what you meant. Too often in our mundane lives we don't believe that we can REALLY subscribe to these romanticized notions of living nobly but I submit that All REAL Men can live no other way![B]"Do thy duty, that is best; Leave unto the Lord the rest!" Unknown

Brian Owens
15th December 2003, 10:05
Originally posted by dingodog1
:cool: This is cool. I think that his entire poem went like this:"A perfect blossom is a rare thing; You could spend your life looking for one. And it would not be a wasted life."
Katsumoto's observation about the search for a perfect blossom was not part of his poem. He was simply stating one of his life values to Algren; that the journey is as important as the destination. And as he is dying he realizes a greater truth; that every blossom (and thus life itself?) is perfect.

His poem, on the other hand, is never finished as far as we know.
After expressing his feeling about the search for a perfect blossom, and after Algren asks who sent the assasins, Katsumoto says:

"I am writing a poem about a dream I had. 'The tiger's eyes are like my own. But he comes from across a deep and troubled sea.'"

This is from the screenplay. I can't recall for sure, but I think in the actual film Katsumoto said something like "I am writing a poem about a dream I had, but I am having trouble finishing it." That's probably why his final line, "They are all perfect," is thought to be the end to his poem.

dingodog1
16th December 2003, 00:49
Hmmm, yeah it confused me. My buddy said he heard that reference but some reason both times that I went I couldn't clearly understand that part. I guess I tried to make sense of it based on what I heard. Sort of the "telephone" game where the original message changes as it's passed on. Thanks for the insight!:nw:

Brian Owens
16th December 2003, 02:11
Originally posted by dingodog1
Sort of the "telephone" game where the original message changes as it's passed on.
Ah! The telephone game! :idea: I'd forgotten about that. Serendipity on E-Budo.com.

I'm writing an article on the relevence/purpose of kata training, and having a tough time getting started.

The example of the telephone game will make a perfect opening!

You helped me without even knowing it. Thank you! :smilejapa