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About Shosetsu

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    Crippled Master With Cracked Fingers

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    Buddhism, Cribbage, Archery, Swords, Travel, Occultism

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  1. Shosetsu

    The Return (2019) new Tatsuya Nakadai samurai film

    I guess I was a bit too harsh in my disdain, Takuma. So let me make it clear that it was just my opinion, a matter of taste. For the most part, Yakuza films leave me cold but there was one exception to that rule. That is, the Yakuza character played by Ryuji Shinagawa who was the traveling companion to the ronin character in Hanayama Daikichi, played by Konoe Jushiro. The reason I enjoyed that Yakuza character was because Shinagawa played it tongue-in-cheek. For example one scene that stands out in my mind even after 30 years was when he felt unbearably itchy, so he stripped down to his loincloth. Then he spread out his clothing on the ground and then knelt down to check for fleas!
  2. Shosetsu

    The Return (2019) new Tatsuya Nakadai samurai film

    @whitesnake By golly, that really surprised me because for some reason I thought that Nakadai Tatsuya had already passed away. After all, the great Matsukata Hiroki passed away the other year. How ironic that Matsukata's television roles in the Samurai programs were much better than his movies about Yakuza which were so awful. Still looking for DVDs on Matsukata's Yagyu Jubei TV series.
  3. Shosetsu

    "Ghost Stories Of Japan" series

    Makes me wonder if that Ghost series included any on haunted Swords. Because there are quite a number of stories of samurai-swords inhabited by an unearthly spirit. Those cases are an outgrowth of the indigenous Japanese religion, Shintoism, that believes in Animism, that is, nature spirits. An Animistic Sword can be seen in the series Bangaku. Because in that series Bangaku actually talks to his Sword. For example in one episode he asks his Sword which town should he go to. The Sword cannot talk back but somehow it helps Bangaku to decide on what to do.
  4. Shosetsu

    "Ghost Stories Of Japan" series

    I think you're 100% right, Takuma. That must be the one--Nihon Kaidan Gekijo, as you said. It's corroborated by the date 1970 and the fact that you acknowledge Mr. Amachi's appearance in episode 13. Thanks. My hat's off to you.
  5. Shosetsu

    "Ghost Stories Of Japan" series

    Let me add that the Ghost series I mentioned is not the anime series that premiered in the year 2000. Instead the one I am referring to came out in either 1970s or 1980s and was live-action. That's why I mentioned Shigeru Amachi.
  6. During the 1970s I remember watching a weekly series called Ghost Stories of Japan. So far I cannot find it on DVD though. The only episode I can actually remember is the Ghost of Oiwa-- and for two reasons. First reason is that the Ghost of Oiwa is the most famous of all the Japanese ghost stories. And the second reason is because that episode starred Actor Shigeru Amachi who was already very well-known to me due to his notoriety as Detective Akechi Kogoro in the Edogawa Ranpo mystery series. That Kogoro series is another one I wish I could see on DVD. But no such luck. So does anybody else remember the Ghost Stories of Japan series?
  7. Although the weapon in this film DEVILISH KILLER is a Sword, one of the components in the blade itself was used in an unusual way I did not expect at all. It's a broadsword whose blade has many rings along the entire upper edge of the blade. All this time I used to think that the purpose of those multiple rings was to use their sound to distract the opponent. So what startled me from this movie was that the villain could detach all those rings from the blade and fling them at his opponent-- in a sense using them like ninja-shurikens. But what I found to be a glaring discrepancy is that those tiny rings actually killed his opponent. At most, those tiny rings should have caused only a very slight wound.
  8. Actress Katahira Nagisa did good Sword play in The Avengers 2003 TV-Asahi. The link did not work so maybe Dragon Claws can fix that.
  9. One film I've watched several times already is Top Lady of the Sword. What surprises me is that the film seems to have borrowed a page from the Japanese Ninjitsu. Because in the early scene of the Swordfight in the tavern the two Male heroes use explosives. Mini-explosives. Since they are just mini-explosives their purpose is to only stun and/or disorient. So nobody gets killed at all but their defeat is made quite clear when they finally end up sprawled all over the floor. As for the Swordplay, it's quite good and is further enhanced by some nice stuntwork as well. By stunt work I am referring to an opponent who falls from an overhead balcony onto a table below, with the table getting split in two from the impact. He survives though, as presumably the table itself served as a cushion. At one point even one of the heroes almost falls from the balcony when the railing breaks off so he dangles off the edge. In seeing the touches of Japanese Ninjitsu from the use of mini-explosives, I cannot help but wonder if the writers saw the Japanese movie of the Crescent-Scar Swordsman starring Ichikawa Utaemon--with Yamagata Isao as the Ninja-leader using those same weapons.
  10. Yes, that green is good. Easy and comfortable to read. When I mentioned the yellow I should have added that it's also done in bold-face print so it stands out from the background.
  11. Having watched the Chinese movie Dream Sword, I thought its title is a Misnomer. Because most of the emphasis was on an Axe instead. And not a regular axe but an axe with a very long handle. I guess it would be called a Pole-Axe. And pole-type weapons have their own distinct category including the monk's weapon whose long pole has a cage-like attachment at one end to ensnare an enemy's blade. If you ask me, that pole-axe is too cumbersome and unwieldy. Because in watching the protagonist swing and handle it, there were some points at which it seems the user was almost thrown off-balance. One aspect of the movie that was very much in its favour was the subtitles. Because the picture itself was in letterbox format whereby the bottom of the picture was totally blank so that the subtitles appeared very clearly. On the other hand if the subtitles appear on the picture itself then I feel they should be yellow so it can provide a contrast with any light-colored scenes that appear. If there is no such contrast then I usually cannot make out the words.
  12. @DragonClaws Thanks for the machete video, especially because this is the first time I ever heard of Haitian fencing.
  13. Thanks for the exhaustive and impressive list. My hat's off to you.
  14. Since the actor Rutger Hauer recently passed away, it's appropriate to remember his film, Blind Fury, where he played a blind swordsman. Novelty here is that the samurai plot is transplanted into the modern era. But what captured my attention is him being trained by Vietnamese villagers. Because it brought back memories of the black belt Don Draeger who wrote the book Asian Fighting Arts. In that book as well as in other books, Draeger covered the whole gamut of Asian fighting arts from Indonesia to the Philippines to even Java. Although Draeger is known mostly for choreographing the action in the film You Only Live Twice, I remember him the most for his books. The Chinese arts already have a tremendous variety of weapons but when you read Draeger's books it's like jumping from a puddle into a swimming pool! In the Blind Fury film, mention must be made of Sho Kosugi's presence. Although his role is minor but his climactic fight scene makes up for it. To master the Sword play, actor Rutger Hauer mentioned how difficult it was to train for it. At first I thought he was trained by Sho Kosugi. But research finds that he was actually trained by a martial artist who's actually blind and won Blind-Judo championships. Lynn Manning. Even though the first name is Lynn, it's actually a man. He was actually blind for real and black belt at the same time so he was the appropriate choice to teach Mr. Hauer how to play a blind swordsman.
  15. @DragonClaws Let me ask you--in your list so far--have you included actress Yoko Natsuki? The list is so long that I could not check every post--so I ask you. She was in the movie Karate For Life. But she's mostly known for her weekly appearances in the tv series Abarenbo Shogun where she played the female Ninja Osono. Since the TV series lasted many years and she did martial arts for each weekly episode, then she must have done at least a hundred scenes of martial arts, making her the lady with the most martial appearances!! Because when I used to watch the series, she did martial arts in every single weekly episode. When I googled online, I see her dressed in only regular clothing but don't see her in her ninja outfit. It would be good if somebody could find an image of her dressed in her ninja outfit. Her name is Yoko Natsuki.