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Warring Clans, Flashing Blades: A Samurai Film Companion Paperback – July 1, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 220 pages
  • Publisher: Stone Bridge Press (July 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933330783
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933330785
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #756,764 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Film critic Patrick Galloway won over readers with film guides Stray Dogs & Lone Wolves: The Samurai Film Handbook, and Asia Shock: Horror and Dark Cinema from Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, and Thailand. A lifelong student of Asian philosophy and culture, Galloway has traveled in Japan, Hong Kong, India and Nepal. He lives in the Bay Area.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Galloway's second book is as good as his first.
Tim Smith
This book is meant to be fun and is the result of Pat's unabashed enthusiasm for the samurai film genre.
Rekishi no Tabi
I found lots of useful information here and it was fun to read!
Goat and Dog

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Rekishi no Tabi on August 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
A number of years ago, while killing time in an airport bookstore, I stumbled across Stray Dogs & Lone Wolves: The Samurai Film Handbook. Or should I say the book sought me out and invited me to go on a fun-filled journey through the realm of samurai cinema. It wasn't hard to convince me to go along for the ride. After all, I am a huge fan of this genre and after less than a minute of thumbing through the book, I was hooked and let myself be guided through some of the most entertaining Japanese films ever made. This book was truly a fun read, and with each new review that I devoured, I realized that I had found the perfect person to watch samurai films with in the form of the author, Patrick Galloway. I don't mean that I've actually watched a film together with Pat, but I immediately liked what Pat had to say and loved his writing style. It wasn't stuffy, condescending or academically dull. Pat writes about samurai period piece films in a natural way, just like you would talk to a good friend about a movie. And when deciding on whether or not to see a particular film, we often tend to rely on the advice and opinions of friends, yes? Well, that's exactly what Pat Galloway's book became--a surrogate friend that helped open the doors to new aspects of Japanese cinema that I was unaware of as well as introduced me to some very good films that I probably never would have known about if it wasn't for this book. SD&LW quickly became my samurai film "buddy" and no doubt, for many others, too.

So as I consider SD&LW a "buddy" book, I wasn't very surprised to see that Pat Galloway's samurai film follow up, Warring Clans, Flashing Blades is appropriately subtitled as a "Samurai Film Companion".
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Goat and Dog on July 16, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the first of Galloway's books I've purchased, but after reading this one, I'm tempted to buy the others as well, just for the joy of reading his conversational and informative style. If you've ever thought it would be nice to go beyond the "wow, this swordplay is really cool" stage of samurai film fandom, I absolutely recommend you pick up Galloway's books on the subject. While I haven't read the first title Stray Dogs & Lone Wolves: The Samurai Film Handbook(since I've seen lots and lots of samurai films already and didn't think I needed an "introduction"), I can wholeheartedly say that this title, Warring Clans, Flashing Blades, is a revelation, even for the movies I have already seen. That alone makes me consider going ahead and buying the first of his samurai movie volumes.

His style is casual and witty, very easy to read. His likes and dislikes are readily apparent, but he always explains his reasons. You don't have to be a college film studies major to enjoy his reviews, and the additional information is helpful and contained in short, easy-to-digest summary style. As Galloway says, he isn't a historian, but what he is is a keen observer and effective communicator. He knows what information is important and what isn't. This volume covers less well known films of the genre, while Stray Dogs is more of an introduction to chambara, so I'd call this one "Chambara 102," a good one to pick up if you want to delve more deeply than what Galloway refers to as "the usual suspects," this is a good one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mel Neuhaus on August 5, 2009
Format: Paperback
In his latest effort, WARRING CLANS, FLASHING BLADES, Patrick Galloway easily secures and embellishes his position as an American master of Japanese cinema.

An essential addition to any serious samurai fan(atic)'s bookshelf, WARRING CLANS reveals, explains and discusses the major forces behind both renowned classics and relatively obscure gems that need seeking out. Best of all, Galloway enlightens us in a scholarly yet thoroughly entertaining style that the likes of Howard Hawks, or, more appropriately, Akira Kurosawa, might have simply have stated, "gets the job done."

I've very nearly worn out the author's previous work, STRAY DOGS & LONE WOLVES - a superb reference source that is never an arm's length away from providing minute details, background information and cultural asides on the 50s, 60s and 70s movies my friends and I have become obsessed with. WARRING CLANS, which, upon receipt, I eagerly perused with a voracious frenzy akin to Hideo Gosha in a red light district (not that I'm comparing myself to the great director - nor the author or his book to a whorehouse), happily seems destined for the same road. Briefly put, in our current cinema-glutted publishing arena, where 95% of the output is negligible pap, it's a revelation to find an indispensable volume that will certainly gage future DVD purchases, as well as offering a literary post-viewing haven for fact-finding and anecdotal lunatics like myself. Even more briefly put, WARRING CLANS, FLASHING BLADES...gets the job done.
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