|Tatsuya Nakadai (Left) and Etsushi Takahashi (Right)|
This is easily one of the funniest samurai films I have ever seen. The plot confused me the first time around and it confused me this time. Thankfully, the film is enjoyable even if you can’t quite sort out every plot detail. The gist is that seven samurai act in what they feel is the best interest of their clan without orders from above. Now they are being hunted down for it by a bad guy with an agenda.
The plot and the characters attached to it are more of a backdrop for two other characters and their story: the ex-samurai and the ex-farmer who wants to be a samurai. The great Japanese actor Tatsuya Nakadai plays the ex-samurai Genta and Etsushi Takahashi plays the ex-farmer Hanji. The film plays like a spaghetti western complete with an appropriate western soundtrack. These two characters are hilarious. Genta tries to watch over the samurai and the ex-farmer, ultimately having to intervene on their behalf. Takahashi is initially in blinding awe of the samurai, but slowly has his eyes opened to the truth of their situation.
Here’s an example of the comedy in this film: the seven are holed up in a fort on a mountain. The bad guy sends itinerant samurai like the ex-farmer to go in and kill them. He also tells Hanji to kill Genta if he comes across him. Genta shows up to intervene on the way to the fort and Hanji comes at him with a sword, misses, but runs through a bad guy who neither of them spotted just off the side of the trail. Another example is in this screenshot where Hanji finally realizes that the brothel has indeed provided him with a women who smells like the earth.
|The Flying Geisha Who Smells Like The Earth|
I know I am not doing this film justice, but it’s a really fun time and a far cry from the old school samurai films. I highly recommend it.