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Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (2011) (Blu-ray) (2D+3D) (Premium Edition) (Japan Version) Blu-ray Region A

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Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (2011) (Blu-ray) (2D+3D) (Premium Edition) (Japan Version)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

After the action-packed swordplay spectacular 13 Assassins, the prolific Miike Takashi delivers a very different type of samurai film for his follow-up. Like Assassins, Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai is a re-imagining of a classic film that integrates new twists on an old-school tale. Renowned kabuki star Ichikawa Ebizo takes on a rare film role, playing a ronin whose request to commit hara-kiri reveals a larger plan that is over a decade in the making. In addition to Ebizo, Miike's low-key and powerful samurai drama also stars Yakusho Koji (13 Assassins), Eita (Wild 7), Mitsushima Hikari (Love Exposure), and Takenaka Naoto (Azumi). Like Kobayashi Masaki's 1962 original, Miike's remake (which was shot in 3D) also participated in the competition section of the prestigious Cannes Film Festival.

Unable to withstand the shame of poverty, a ronin (a master-less samurai) named Tsugomo goes to the House of Iyi and requests for permission to commit suicide in the house's courtyard. Assuming that Tsugomo is simply bluffing for money, the Iyi house's chief retainer Saito (Yakusho Koji) tells him the story of Matome (Eita), a young ronin who tried to make money to save his sick wife (Mitsushima Hikari) and had his bluff called. However, Tsugomo remains insistent and begins telling his own story to Saito, revealing his true reason for needing to commit suicide.

This edition features both the 3D and 2D version of the film. It includes making of, stage events, trailers, and other bonus features.

Note: 3D television, 3D Blu-ray player, and 3D glasses are required to view the 3D version of the film.

© 2012-2024 Ltd. All rights reserved. This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Technical Information

Product Title: Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (2011) (Blu-ray) (2D+3D) (Premium Edition) (Japan Version) 一命 (Blu-ray) (Premium Edition) (日本版) 一命 (Blu-ray) (Premium Edition) (日本版) 一命 プレミアム・エディション 【Blu-rayDisc】 Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (2011) (Blu-ray) (2D+3D) (Premium Edition) (Japan Version)
Also known as: Ichimei Ichimei Ichimei Ichimei Ichimei
Artist Name(s): Ichikawa Ebizo | Nagayama Eita | Sakamoto Ryuichi | Yakusho Koji | Takenaka Naoto | Arai Hirofumi | Mitsushima Hikari | Namioka Kazuki | Aoki Munetaka 市川海老蔵 | 永山瑛太 | 坂本龍一 | 役所廣司 | 竹中直人 | 新井浩文 | 滿島光 | 波岡一喜 | 青木崇高 Ichikawa Ebizo | 永山瑛太 | 坂本龙一 | 役所广司 | 竹中直人 | 新井浩文 | 满岛光 | Namioka Kazuki | 青木崇高 市川海老蔵 | 永山瑛太 | 坂本龍一 | 役所広司 | 竹中直人 | 新井浩文 | 満島ひかり | 波岡一喜 | 青木崇高 Ichikawa Ebizo | Nagayama Eita | Sakamoto Ryuichi | Yakusho Koji | Takenaka Naoto | Arai Hirofumi | Mitsushima Hikari | Namioka Kazuki | Aoki Munetaka
Director: Miike Takashi 三池崇史 Miike Takashi 三池崇史 Miike Takashi
Blu-ray Region Code: A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?
Release Date: 2012-04-13
Publisher Product Code: ASBD-1041
Language: Japanese
Place of Origin: Japan
Disc Format(s): Blu-ray
Other Information: Blu-ray Disc + DVD
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1030277956

Product Information

タイトル:一命 プレミアム・エディション: 【Blu-rayDisc】

2011年カンヌ国際映画祭 [コンペティション部門]出品


映像特典:イベント映像 ほか(予定)/メイキング・ドキュメンタリー(予定)



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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Hara-kiri: Death of a Samurai (2011) (Blu-ray) (2D+3D) (Premium Edition) (Japan Version)"

June 25, 2012

This professional review refers to Hara-Kiri : Death of a Samurai (2011) (DVD) (UK Version)
Prolific and unpredictable Japanese auteur Miike Takashi follows up his hugely popular and critically acclaimed 13 Assassins with another period samurai outing in the form of Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai. The film is again a remake, this time of Kobayashi Masaki's 1962 classic Hara-Kiri and despite its sombre mood and themes was actually shot in 3D, conjuring images of swords being thrust at the audience and hacked-off limbs sailing into the middle distance. As usual, the film sees Miike pulling together an interesting cast, including Yakusho Koji (also in 13 Assassins and himself a Kiyoshi Kurosawa regular, having appeared in Tokyo Sonata, Retribution and others), Ichikawa Ebizu (Space Battleship Yamato), Mitsushima Hikari (recently in Smuggler) and Eita (from the Nodame Cantabile television series and films), as well as enlisting the talents of noted composer Sakamoto Ryuichi.

The film opens in 17th century Japan, with a ronin called Hanshiro (Ichikawa Ebizu turning up at the house of Li, asking for permission to use their courtyard to commit ritual suicide after falling into shameful poverty. With it being a common practice of the time for some samurai to use such empty requests as a means of eliciting money or finding work with clans, the Li chief official Kageyu (Yakusho Koji) attempts to put him off by telling him of the horrible end that met the last ronin to have done so, a young man called Motome (Eita). Although Hanshiro appears undeterred, as his own story unfolds it soon becomes clear that he is masking his true intentions.

By now, audiences should probably know to expect the unexpected from Miike Takashi, and that's certainly the case here, as despite being another classical samurai remake, Hara-Kiri is a very different film to 13 Assassins. If anything, the film is even more restrained, and even less like his wilder outings of the past, coming across more like a particularly doom-laden Yamada Yoji effort, with a slow, deliberate pace and an emphasis very much on character and plot rather than action. In this respect, Miike's film is also quite different to the Kobayashi original, showing a much simpler and more stripped down approach to storytelling, broken neatly into a fairly basic structure through a series of flashbacks. This approach works well, and the film does a good job of exploring the same themes of respect and honour, along with the hypocrisy and injustice inherent in the old feudal system and the futility of obsessively trying to save face. The various plot twists are all effective, and though the film is a touch overlong, mainly due to a padded out middle section, it's surprisingly moving and powerful in a sad and tragic fashion.

The film as a whole has a funereal affair, and is definitely one of Miike's more atmospheric efforts. This is to a large part due to some quietly gorgeous visuals and set design, with the period being brought to convincing life in gritty yet beautiful manner. Miike's direction is subtle and controlled throughout, with none of the weirdness he has become so well known for, and this fits the film and its grim mood perfectly. Although this may sound disappointing for viewers anticipating more epic 13 Assassins style battle scenes, the film for the most part revolves around dialogue and drama rather than action, with very little in the way of bloodshed. This having been said, the film does finally erupt into a spectacular and gloriously choreographed mass sword battle towards the end, which is all the more exciting and tense for its emotional build-up.

Sadly, it has to be said that the film really does suffer from its truly needless 3D gimmick, which adds absolutely nothing either to the climatic action sequences or to the proceedings in general. It's really quite mystifying as to why it was ever thought to be a good idea, as it only serves to darken and blur the image, with a few scenes definitely coming out murkier than was surely planned. Although this by no means ruins the film, it's definitely enough to make the 2D version infinitely preferable where available.

Still, even with such pointless use of modern technology, Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai is a fine, handsome and stately film that does justice to its source material while taking a slightly different approach. An affecting and gripping entry into the modern samurai genre, it again proves that Miike Takashi is not only one of the most talented, but also the most versatile directors working anywhere in the world today.

by James Mudge -

This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of
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