A searing denunciation of the abuse of power, and the contradictions and hypocrisies of the warrior code of feudal Japan. With savage irony, Kobayashi comments also on the perversion of history when it is recorded exclusively by the victors in a struggle for power. A ronin or masterless samurai requests permission to commit an honorable ritual suicide at the home of a powerful but sadistic warlord. Through extended flashbacks and stunning widescreen cinematography, Kobayashi tells the tale of why this is necessary and how it is done in a narrative that is as gripping as the finest modern detective story.
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