Monday, October 17, 2016
In the extras on the Criterion release, screenwriter Shinobu (THE SWORD OF DOOM, SEVEN SAMURAI) Hashimoto describes HARAKIRI as "A samurai's bitter ranting at his harakiri ceremony, that's it." and while that is true he neglects to mention that the samurai he's talking about (Tatsuya Nakadai) is one bad motherfucker! I can't say how badass he is without ruining it for anybody unfortunate enough to have never seen HARAKIRI, but, trust me, he ain't no joke.
Exciting sword fights, massive amounts of talent both in front of and behind the camera, strong script that gives you a lot to think about even after the film is over, steady pace that keeps building the excitement, gravel that mysteriously re-sweeps itself after people walked on it, awesome lighting, believable ending. Highly recommended.
Double-feature with 1966's THE SWORD OF DOOM. Also, Tatsuya Nakadai and Tetsuro Tanba would face off again seven years later in GOYOKIN, but it's not nearly as exciting.