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Last Samurai : Values Friday, 30 December 2005

Posted by R Garfield in Drifting.
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All those movies/channels, and nothing to watch… so I ended up watching The Last Samurai again. It remains one of my favourite films. Granted, it’s historical accuracy is more in the feel than the detail. Granted, it’s an action-adventure epic.

But the themes it centers on, especially as portrayed by Ken Watanabe, Hiroyuki Sanada, and Shin Koyamada, are ones that I personally find stirring. Forget for a moment the ride of the samurai into the hail of bullets from the gattling gun, or Tom Cruise lobbing off someone’s head with a sword.

It’s not the fighting or heroics that attract me to the film. Rather, it’s the virtues that are attributed to 武士? (bushido): 義 (morality), 勇 (bravery), 礼 (respect), 誠 (honesty), ??誉 (honour) and 忠 (ethics). There are different translations for these, so forgive me if mine are less than correct.

Those values are ones that have echoes, even in this day and time. They have a broadbased appeal (or so I believe) that’s almost universal. I know that I do not uphold those ideals, but I wish that I did. It’s a goal to strive for.

Heh. There’s a reason for the ‘drifting’ category for postings. I’m drifting, in this post: I have something I want to say, but I’m unable to say it clearly.

Just a thought that ethics, integrity and personal morality and ethics still have a part to play in the world, and that a life lived that aims towards those precepts is a life that is well lived.

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