A Shogun warrior is cast through time, heaven, and hell, battling his way through gods and humans alike to avenge his death in another case of style over substance from Takashi Miike. I think it's safe to say I have no idea what this film is about. Watching it is like reading a book where the pages have been shuffled and chapters have been lost. As a piece of film art, it offers beautiful cinematography and set design combined with organic fight choreography that feels like a hybrid between CROUCHING TIGER and HIGHLANDER. The problem is, while the battles are well done, it is the same boring sword fighting scenes over and over and over for two hours, with virtually no story or gore to justify the mundane action. It strives to be profound and intentionally offensive through what I am assuming is supposed to be political, social, sexual, and religious commentary, but all of the meaning is lost on the audience due to the cryptic plotting tools. I was checked out well before the first hour, but kept watching to maintain my integrity. For bizarre, non-linear sword fighting action, check this one out, otherwise avoid.
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