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The Last Samurai [HD DVD] (2003)

Tom Cruise , Ken Watanabe , Edward Zwick  |  R |  HD DVD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,077 customer reviews)


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PRODUCT ALERT:
• IMPORTANT NOTICE: This high-definition disc will only play in an HD DVD player. It will not play in a standard-definition DVD player, Blu-ray player, or PS3.
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Product Details

  • Actors: Tom Cruise, Ken Watanabe, Billy Connolly, William Atherton, Chad Lindberg
  • Directors: Edward Zwick
  • Writers: Edward Zwick, Marshall Herskovitz, John Logan
  • Producers: Edward Zwick, Charles Mulvehill, Graham Larson, Marshall Herskovitz
  • Format: Anamorphic, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital-Plus 5.1), French (Dolby Digital-Plus 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital-Plus 2.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish, French
  • Aspect Ratio: 2.40:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: April 18, 2006
  • Run Time: 154 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,077 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000E5KJDO
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #209,325 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Last Samurai [HD DVD]" on IMDb

Special Features

  • 1080p High Definition 16x9
  • Dolby Digital-Plus English 5.1, Dolby Digital-Plus Francais 5.1, Dolby Digital-Plus Espanol 2.0
  • Commentary by director Edward Zwick
  • Deleted scenes with commentary
  • History vs. Hollywood: The Last Samurai {History Channel Documentary
  • Tom Cruise: A Warrior's Journey
  • Edward Zwick: Director's Video Journal
  • Making an Epic: A Conversation with Edward Zwick and Tom Cruise
  • A World of Detail: production design with Lilly Kilvert
  • Silk and Armor: costume design with Ngila Dickson
  • Imperial Army Basic Training
  • From Soldier to Samurai: the weapons
  • Japan premieres {Tokyo & Kyoto red carpet)
  • Theatrical trailer

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

While Japan undergoes tumultuous transition to a more Westernized society in 1876-77, The Last Samurai gives epic sweep to an intimate story of cultures at a crossroads. In America, tormented Civil War veteran Capt. Nathan Algren (Tom Cruise) is coerced by a mercenary officer (Tony Goldwyn) to train the Japanese Emperor's troops in the use of modern weaponry. Opposing this "progress" is a rebellion of samurai warriors, holding fast to their traditions of honor despite strategic disadvantage. As a captive of the samurai leader (Ken Watanabe), Algren learns, appreciates, and adopts the samurai code, switching sides for a climactic battle that will put everyone's honor to the ultimate test. All of which makes director Edward Zwick's noble epic eminently worthwhile, even if its Hollywood trappings (including an all-too-conventional ending) prevent it from being the masterpiece that Zwick and screenwriter John Logan clearly wanted it to be. Instead, The Last Samurai is an elegant mainstream adventure, impressive in all aspects of its production. It may not engage the emotions as effectively as Logan's script for Gladiator, but like Cruise's character, it finds its own quality of honor. --Jeff Shannon

Product Description

Epic Action Drama. Set in Japan during the 1870s, The Last Samurai tells the story of Capt. Nathan Algren (Tom Cruise), a respected American military officer hired by the Emperor of Japan to train the country's first army in the art of modern warfare. As the Emperor attempts to eradicate the ancient Imperial Samurai warriors in preparation for more Westernized and trade-friendly government policies, Algren finds himself unexpectedly impressed and influenced by his encounters with the Samurai, which places him at the center of a struggle between two eras and two worlds, with only his own sense of honor to guide him.

DVD Features:
Audio Commentary:Commentary by Edward Zwick
Deleted Scenes:The Beheading (Behind the Beheading) Algren and Katsumoto
Documentaries:History vs. Hollywood: The Last Samurai {History Channel Documentary)
Featurette:Tom Cruise: A Warrior's Journey Edward Zwick: Director's Video Journal {Behind-the-scenes production journal - narrated by Ed Zwick and Tom Cruise A World of Detail: Production Design with Lilly Kilvert Silk and Armor: Costume Design with Ngila Dickson Imperial Army Basic Training: From Soldier to Samurai: The Weapons
Interviews:Making an Epic: A Conversation with Edward Zwick


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
81 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very moved and remind me somethig inportant thing December 11, 2003
By A Customer
I am Japanease and live in Japan.
At first time,Tom Cruise decided to make Samurai movie,most of Japanese must be suspicious about it.
Because all hollywood movie about Japan and Japanese were really strange for us.
I always disappointed and felt didn't want to watch to the end.
But this movie was really great.
I can't belive this movie was made by another country except Japan.
It must be very difficult job and They did it.
Most of Japanese don't understand "samurai"spirit in these days.
And this movie was so fresh and felt like re-educated.
One of Japanese,I would like to say thank you to "The Last Samurai"
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140 of 151 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five stars! December 11, 2003
By Aya
As a Japanese living in the United Staes, I can say totally, that this film is amazing. There're some critics says Tom Cruise's acting and so on, however, this film sucessfully depicts the history of Japan, and people's traditional lives and the end of samurai era.
This is a spectacular movie with sweeping sword actions and it is based on the true history events in japan, I've seen a lot of samurai movies(made in japan for japanese) but i can say this one is GREAT as the other movies, plus this is not usual hollywood movies that awfully depicts samurais and even Yakuzas and brush off the truth.
I can say, however, without Tom Cruise, this movie could have also been great as well. But i would guess that it is because of him, this movie gained more attention among people and so typical americans can get the idea of what samurai really is and what they really think.
so overall i gave this movie 5 stars. I plan to go watch it again.
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238 of 277 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Katsumoto is the King February 8, 2004
It's 1876. Captain Nathan Algren (Tom Cruise) has been sent to Japan in order to help the Imperial Japanese Army become more 'modern' and less 'traditional' and ultimately prepare them to fight the legendary Samurai. Events occur that cause Tom Cruise to be a captive of the deadly but extremely polite Katsumoto (Ken Watanabe) who is the leader of the Japanese Samurai. At this point, the viewer begins to learn why the Samurai are fighting to preserve their way of life against Western influences and Cruise's character becomes emotionally bound to them and he integrates himself into their society after working hard to earn their trust. However, the film is not solely about the struggle for the Samurai to keep their way of life, another subplot includes the low key and shy love relationship between Algren and Taka, a quiet widow (played with subtlety by Koyuki). Though it isn't a big part in the film, it highlights the emotional aspect of the film and shows that this is not a film about swords.
Positive Points:
In my view, Cruise has been a decent actor with fluctuating performances but in this current effort, he has shown that he is improving and learning how to adapt to different styles of acting. He plays the tormented captain with surprising intelligence and conviction. I was very impressed to see him speaking Japanese - I loved the way this film mixed both English and Japanese toghether because it gave it a strong edge. However, The real star of this film is Ken Watanabe (Tom who?). He played Katsumoto with such a commanding and intense presence that it was hard to concentrate on Cruise or any other actor in the film. Without doubt deserves the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.
Special mention should go to Koyuki and Ujio (played by Hiroyuki Sanada).
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91 of 104 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The last samurai February 3, 2004
This film has been compared (a lot) to Dances with Wolves due to the fact that they both share similar themes. A Civil War era soldier who finds himself thrown in the middle of a different culture and ends up embracing it and becoming part of it.
However, Edward Zwick's film differs from the Kevin Costner Oscar winner in that the principal character, Lt. Nathan Algren (Cruise) is down on his luck, having become a drunken caricature of his former self, deeply regretful of his actions, who accepts a job as an instructor for an incipient Japanese army that needs to be prepared to fight against the Samurai.
As he arrives to Tokyo he starts training a useless bunch of would-be soldiers who are sent to fight even if they're not ready for it. As a result, the newly formed army gets butchered by the battle experienced Samurai. During that battle, Algren fights bravely and kills one of the highest ranking warriors, getting the interest of the famed Katsumoto, the last great Samurai leader, who orders him captured and brought to his son's village as a prisoner.
Once there, Algren's life is changed forever as he gets to know the real lifestyle of the Samurai and their people. They turn out not to be the savages that the Japanese government makes them out to be. After spending winter with them, Algren "changes sides" and joins the Samurai in fighting the Emperor's army.
The title of the movie tells the final outcome. The Samurai lose the battle. Progress triumphs over tradition. New over old. But Algren's past demons are redeemed by his courageous actions helping the Samurai.
The true worth of this movie is its look. You can definetely see where the budget went (other than Cruise's salary). A whole village was built and the attention to detail is astonishing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than expected!
Toms performance is top notch in this film. I recommend this film to any Samurai buff, or anyone who loves to study Japan's "Edo" period. Read more
Published 2 days ago by Samurai Bill
5.0 out of 5 stars A great depiction of an incredible class of warrior.
Wonderful!
Published 2 days ago by Rev210
5.0 out of 5 stars 1080p
I already owned it on DVD but for the price point, it was totally worth the upgrade to 1080p. I love this move and shipping was faster then expected.
Published 3 days ago by Isaac
2.0 out of 5 stars stupid ninja scene
Okay okay, it's a decent samurai movie that happens to have Tom Cruise in it. As such, you can expect a few "Tom Cruise moments" and a silly, stupid ninja scene. Read more
Published 4 days ago by Lee T. Riley
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Movie
Published 5 days ago by Matthew Payne
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
superb video quality
Published 6 days ago by David Merchant
4.0 out of 5 stars Truely the Last
Interesting look at the Samurai lives in Asia. Their culture and beliefs as well as their view to family and honor.
You even forget your watching Tom. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Gregory R Vasquez
4.0 out of 5 stars The History Of Samurai
The Last Samurai is an epic drama that tells a story of an American military adviser that embraces the Samurai culture after he was hired to destroy it after he is captured in... Read more
Published 13 days ago by DESERTMAN40
4.0 out of 5 stars I have seen this movie several times and enjoy it always
I have seen this movie several times and enjoy it always. It is visually stunning with beautiful scenes of Japan. The story itself is quite compelling and redemptive.
Published 13 days ago by Mary E. Coleman
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must See!!!
Excellent movie. I have seen it before which is the reason I wanted to own it. Tom Cruise did a wonderful job, as did everyone in the movie. Read more
Published 14 days ago by P. Meyer
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First question
No it can't you need one of the new hd-dvd players or an hd-dvd drive for your computer.

The good thing about the HD-DVD players is they are backwards compatible with dvds and can play those too.
Apr 12, 2006 by J. |  See all 4 posts
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