Anime fans in the mid 90s will surely remember the days where AXN broadcast the popular anime series, then titled “Samurai X”. 15 years on, how will the movie adaptation fare through the passage of time?
Rurouni Kenshin tells the life of a wanderer swordsman called Himura Kenshin, who casts out his past and swears to never take a life after taking numerous lives to pave way for a new era in the history of Japan back in the mid-late 1800s. 10 years have past since he last took a life, and encounters Kamiya Kaoru, a young swordswoman trained in an a sword style that doesn’t take lives.
Director Keishi Ohtomo is adept at capturing the hearts of both fans and newcomers to Rurouni Kenshin’s storyline, having selected a great cast that depicts each of the iconic characters almost to near perfection. Takeru Sato (Kamen Rider Den-O) is a familiar face to many recent Tokusatsu fans, and portrays the titular character Himura Kenshin with ease, including the character’s trademark ‘Oro’. Emi Takei’s Kaoru was extremely good, as with veteran actor Yosuke Eguchi as Hajime Saito.
Fight scenes are gritty and realistic, showing the raw carnage that is within Bakumatsu‘s (Late Tokugawa Shogunate) era, with sword fights done with finesse and flair. With the original Mangaka Nobuhiro Watsuki holding the movie’s advisory role, it is no wonder the cinematography was superb. Our only grouse was that the soundtrack could have done without too much Western influences.
Whether you are an anime fan in the past or present, or simply someone that appreciates movies about Samurai, Rurouni Kenshin serves to entertain, and it does very well.