[J-MOVIE] Rurouni Kenshin Live-Action - TALK UP aka ORO SANJOU!

As big_j_ny suggested, here it is. Here's my analysis:
[HIDE]This movie is a mixup (it's neither a good or bad movie but entertaining). The quality in terms of fight scenes are amazing as well as the cinematography. I don't mind the casting especially the main character. If there's anything wrong in it, then there is one: the storyline. Fans of both the manga and the anime would definitely have mixed reactions (mostly negative due to continuity error). Plus, we never get the backstory on how he got his cross-shaped scar at the first place although we've seen it during the flashback but only a percentage of it. And finally, Hajime Saito should NOT have been in the movie.
[/HIDE]
Overall, I would definitely look forward to the sequel which is closer to the manga, some sources said and if that will happen, then Shishio will definitely be the main antagonist.
 

big_j_ny

Just an Internet User Passing Thru
I agree with you on the messy-ness of the plotline. It took me some research after I watched the movie the first time, and yeah......Saito was never meant to be in this movie in terms of following his appearance in the manga/anime.

If anything, that explains why the Saito/Kenshin duel was so damn short in the movie......considering how the Saito/Kenshin duel in the second story arc is considered one of the most popular anime fights amongst the anime fandom. Saito was never meant to be part of "this story arc" that the movie is based on, so his impact in this movie was very limited.

The only other issue I had problem with this movie is essentially limited Sanosuke's role in the movie.........considering he is a major character for the entire fucking anime/manga. Sano's debut was very short and brief, BUT it barely showed Sano earning the respect and friendship of Kenshin besides Kenshin doing his "lil speech." There should have been more Sanosuke in this movie, in order to establish his character and friendship with Kenshin & company.

I could say the same about Yahiko getting barely any character build-up, but I've never been a fan of Yahiko anyway........so I'll let the Yahiko fans settle that argument.

Other than that, the acting in this movie was SUPERB. The personalities of all the characters are basically identical to how they are portrayed in the anime/manga, especially the flawlessness of Takeru Satoh's portray of Kenshin Himura......AND Hitokiri Battousai.

The SUPERB acting basically nullifies all the aspects of the movie that "made me iffy."
 

Galaxian

Lurker
The story was basically everything before the Kyoto arc merged into a single plot-line. In my opinion this was a better option than them trying to go through several different plots in one movie.

I love how much attention to detail was paid to the source material. Kenshin's "oro" and "de gozaru", Sanosuke's sword, even the scene when Saito is called a government lapdog. I specially like when Saito made his sword-stance, I was actually waiting for them to mess that particular detail up, so glad that I was wrong.
 

Aoiblue

Raxbait: Hip
Okay, gave it a few hours, clear head so here's my thoughts on the movie.
For the most part, I didn't like it (and I'm pretty easy to please! Haha). I marathoned the manga back late August so it's still fresh in my mind.
I'll just post what I liked about it first. Minor spoilers btw.

[HIDE]The acting. SUPERB, the producers got excellent actors to portray the characters and I was very satisfied with many of their performances (sans 2-3 people, I'll get to that in a bit). They definitely got good actors to act in this movie.
The action. Breathtaking, the way Takeru moved was amazing, the action with him fighting blew me away.

As for the characters:
Sato Takeru, Great kenshin, he sold me as him.
Saito Hajime....not suppose to be here, but if they're making a sequel, it's setup for it.
Kaoru, sadly Takei Emi (love her acting) wasn't really given justice here since, I didn't see much of her manga character in it. I blame the writers on this one.
Yahiko, took his history of being a thief away...not really the same character :/
Sanosuke, weird intro, but I loved this guy!
Kanryu, okay, they made this guy a bigger villain then he was suppose to be. In the manga he was puppet for the most part. I think because they hired a well known actor they made him more relevant then he should be.
Megumi, I think we needed a different actress for this cause, I wasn't feeling it from her.
Jin-e, pretty good villian, but again Like kanryu, felt like they just made him a little more relevant then he should be.
-Oniwabanshū, pretty much nonexistent besides two of the actors (Luna dopant and the merged Enishi[?] and Hyottoko). Also, makes me super bummed no Aoshi :(

I think my 3 biggest complaints for this movie (besides the story) would be: 1. When Kenshin is fighting...he sure got hurt a lot. Well I mean, to me when he was fighting Hajime and got the reverse blade on his shoulder I was like.....I don't think Kenshin (in the manga) would ever get himself in that position to have his blade hurt himself (also I don't recall if he got that red shirt long before Kaoru gave it to him in this movie). 2. When Megumi was running away from Jin-e in the police station...you know, falling nearly 3 times, crawling on the floor, I guess that's what turned me off from that character. I don't think her character would allow herself to do that 3. The entire village caring for Kaoru's dojo. Like...one of the random character's said that they'll always have her back, and they even went to her when the children got sick hoping for some help....that, never happened in the manga. At all. That was...just weird.

And yeah, I know a lot of people are mixed on the story, I'm on the dark side lol.
I know the director said he wanted to do the movie in a marvel style, getting different stories and merging it together (like the Avengers), but...those are decades old. Rurouni Kenshin is still under 20,. I don't think it was that necessary to switch things around THAT much to keep things fresh imo. RK definitely suits more to a Jdrama (which...they actually PLANNED on doing, but then decided to do the movie and then jdrama, but now I'm guessing they're just sticking to movies). It's cause it's stuck in movie format that I feel it didn't really get that much potential to properly pace that it should have.

Anyways, I give it a 2.5/5.[/HIDE]
 

Hentailover

Lurker
I really liked the movie. And I have no problems that things are not exactly like in manga. They shouldn't be. it's a movie. They work different from continuous series. Anyone whining about small unimportant details can be dismissed as a blind fanboy.
Oh, and original is one of my favorite anime series of all time, so it's not like I don't understand it. I just have common sense.


But the movie by no means flawless.
Cinematography is great, sets are real and used to their fullest. There's little to no CGI, everything is rather gritty, bloody when needed. Stuff is dirty and slimy when it needs to, the movie isn't trying to be clean and pretty about what it's doing. There are freaking bugs and worms crawling over the corpses that were lying in the dirt entire night.
Stunts are practical, the battles are dynamic. They are also rather fresh, helped by the fact that Kenshin barely unsheathed his sword before finale. Added variety.
Acting was very enjoyable except for the lead. Because of how darker and more compressed the story is, we never really got any of the lighthearted scenes where Kenshin is silly and participate in comic relief. Sure it'd be out of place in this movie, but it does hurt the character. There's no contrast between everyday Kenshin and Moody and introverted Kenshin when past catches up to him. He is constantly moody and introverted , which leads to the face full of "dull disinterest" for the majority of the movie. Considering that everybody else around him acts their asses off, him being this boring and unengaged feels weird. Even Saito Hajime, who was the definition of stoic and "dull disinterest" in the series, here has passion, despite how unneeded he is for this movie, which I totally agree with.

Most of the changes are perfectly fine. Some are shaky, like Fake Battousai pretending to be from Kamiya Kashin went nowhere. I understand why they needed to keep the "somebody is tainting the reputation of her doujo" part, that was pretty much essential and I understand it. But the character they give the role too had no motivation to do that and it went nowhere. But it's still better than bringing that stupid comic relief villain from the first episode.
Most of the changes make sense. You don't need Onivabanshu in this movie. They were pretty much a set up for next story arc, they could and were successfully replaced with random goons. You have to compress the story. You have less time to establish things.

The problems actually not from what they did omit, but from what they didn't. Apart from Saito having f**k all to do in this movie, there's Zanbato. Gekijouban manga did a very smart decision of taking it out entirely. You can establish that Sanosuke's super strength other way. He is a brawler. No need to even try to recreate that giant sword by creating a very fake and flimsy rubber sword. It looked pathetic.
The story might get a bit confusing to people that didn't see the original. Not because the movie has troubles explaining itself, but simply because there's so much. Movie is over two hours and it feels like it, having to deal with two story arcs compressed into one.
The whole "Shin no ippo" feels silly. The world meant to be more realistic than the original, so having magical hypnotic powers is a bit too much. I understand why it's there. I understand why it had to be hastily established on the one random guy in police station. It's so that there can be a time limit on the battle. So that Kenshin has to be put in the situation of choice, the conflict brought to him by a person who is essentially a legacy and embodiment of his past. This is actually where him pretending to be a hitokiri makes sense, since that's essentially what he is. He is what Kenshin abandoned that day and he is the past that cought up. But you could think of something else other than "magical hypnotic eye" to create this conflict.

Some of the stunts were also way over the top. When he was running horizontally, it really took me out of the moment, for example. And Saito's Gatotsu was laughable.
Some editing was weird, especially when fake Battousai first encountered Kaoru. Those weird sudden speed ups were out of place and inconsistent with the rest of the editing in the movie. They were just weird choices that director probably shouldn't have made.

Other problems I had with subtitles. First of all, "Why is he leaving these zankanjou" is not english. It's "weeaboo". Sure, fine don't translate the names of styles and attacks, but you should translate something like that.
And more importantly, hitokiri. I had this problem way before. Every single translation leaved this word untraslated. Why? It's "murderer". Heck, go metal and translate it a bit more directly as "Human slayer". Go promt and translate it as "human cutter". But no, it's left as hitokiri even when it's not a part of "Hitokiri Battousai" name.


Overall, I really liked the movie. It's entertaining, it actually does a rather good job of keeping it close to the source material. Almost all the changes made sense for the movie and it's never a betrayal.
It's also surprising how dark this story can be, something not noticeable in the original.


I think my 3 biggest complaints for this movie (besides the story) would be: 1. When Kenshin is fighting...he sure got hurt a lot. Well I mean, to me when he was fighting Hajime and got the reverse blade on his shoulder I was like.....I don't think Kenshin (in the manga) would ever get himself in that position to have his blade hurt himself (also I don't recall if he got that red shirt long before Kaoru gave it to him in this movie). 2. When Megumi was running away from Jin-e in the police station...you know, falling nearly 3 times, crawling on the floor, I guess that's what turned me off from that character. I don't think her character would allow herself to do that 3. The entire village caring for Kaoru's dojo. Like...one of the random character's said that they'll always have her back, and they even went to her when the children got sick hoping for some help....that, never happened in the manga. At all. That was...just weird.

As for Oniwabanshu, I mentioned that they really had no point in being here. Out of place Saito is enough. We don't need more out of place characters. Just because everyone masturbates over Aoshi, doesn't mean he was important for this part of the story.

as for other complaints:
1. Dramatic tension and point of the character. He is pacifistic to the detriment of himself. Saito was proving to him, that those were just pretty words that will come back to bite him. that what it represented. His sword hurting himself was a visual metaphor of that conflict of moralities. The sword that cuts your enemy against a sword that essentially hurts yourself. Trigun did similar thing, where Vash's pacifism caused him to look like a torture victim.
2. Actually she was being bumped into by a bunch of cops running full speed with sticks in their hands. it also slowed her down, making the killer feel closer, once again for dramatic tension.
3. This scene is weird, but I understand the point of it. It was to establish Megumi as a medic and someone who really much cares about human life and have passion to do the right thing. It also established that her hiding away is going to hurt others, which prompted her to come back and take responsibility, by trying to kill the bastard.
They went weird about it, that I agree with, but the point of the scene was not about Kaoru, village caring about Kaoru and her doujo, or any of that. It was "Megumi's scene"
 
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chronoxiong

Digital Artist
This was a good movie and it was pretty long but its a length I don't mind because they had a lot of stuff to fill into a 2+ hour movie. I thought the action the was superb and very fast paced. Took me by surprised as Takeru Sato looked badass fighting with a reversed bladed sword. I totally bought Takeru as Kenshin so this was a great casting choice. Everyone else did well in their roles too. I didn't think anyone was miscast although I felt Megumi's role was lacking. We are all of a sudden to supposed to care for her without getting the time to actually care for her. It's no biggie though. I was glad we got a flashback scene to see how Kenshin got one of his scars too. I totally forgot how he got his scars because I haven't watched the anime for a long time so this was a good way to remind me. Looks like the guy Kenshin killed is the main star of Keitai Sousakan 7. Lol...So yeah, I enjoyed this movie a lot and thought it was a great adaptation. Would love to see a sequel in the future.
 

kuroihikari

Member
A bit late to comment, but:

as for other complaints:
1. Dramatic tension and point of the character. He is pacifistic to the detriment of himself. Saito was proving to him, that those were just pretty words that will come back to bite him. that what it represented. His sword hurting himself was a visual metaphor of that conflict of moralities. The sword that cuts your enemy against a sword that essentially hurts yourself. Trigun did similar thing, where Vash's pacifism caused him to look like a torture victim.

I agree with this. Aside from that, there was a similar scene from this point of the manga/anime where Kenshin gripped his sword on the blade in order to shorten his grip. This (hurting himself) was an important part of his personality that got addressed fully during the Hirameki training.
 

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