UNFORGIVEN (許されざる者)

Directed by: Lee Sang-il 2013 | 135 min.

Section: Spotlight on Japan

Premiere: Hawaii


Synopsis

With his Japanese remake of Clint Eastwood's UNFORGIVEN, director Lee Sang-il becomes the latest in a line of illustrious filmmakers to cross-pollinate the western and chambara genres.

Jubei Kamata (Ken Watanabe) is a widowed father and infamous former swordsman who spends his days tending a struggling farm. His commitment to pastoral tranquility is tested when Kingo Baba (Akira Emoto), an old comrade in arms, brings news of a bounty substantial enough to secure his children's future: the prostitutes of a neighbouring village have pledged 1,000 yen for the lives of the bandits who mutilated one of their own. Rustily and somewhat reluctantly, Jubei joins Kingo in the saddle, along with a brash young braggart named Goro (Yuya Yagira). Together, they fancy themselves more than a match for the wanted men. But they are also destined to encounter a far more formidable faction, led by a sadistic lawman (Koichi Sato) with a distaste for soldiers of fortune.

Lee wisely retains the spine of David Webb Peoples's acclaimed screenplay, but adds several notable flourishes of his own. A subplot concerning Japan's indigenous Ainu squares his update with the broader western tradition of depicting the plight of aboriginal peoples at the hands of so-called civilizing forces. Lee also refashions the film's climactic standoff to stunning effect, conceiving a fiery new finale that is certain to see his UNFORGIVEN become iconic in its own right.

Synopsis written by: TIFF

1880年、開拓が進む江戸幕府崩壊後の北海道。人里離れた土地で子どもたちとひっそりと暮らす釜田十兵衛(渡辺謙)だが、その正体は徳川幕府の命を受けて志士たちを惨殺して回った刺客であった。幕末の京都で人斬(き)りとして名をとどろかせるも、幕府崩壊を機に各地を転々と流れ歩くようになり、五稜郭を舞台にした箱館戦争終結を境に新政府の追手をかわして失踪。それから10年あまり、十兵衛に刀を捨てさせる決意をさせた妻には先立たれ、経済的に困窮する日々を送っていた。そこから抜け出そうと、再び刀を手にする彼だが……。

Screenings

Sunday, April 06 6:00 PM Dole Cannery A Date Passed
Tuesday, April 08 9:00 PM Dole Cannery B Date Passed

Cast & Crew

Director Lee Sang-il
Screenwriter Lee Sang-il
Producer Suguru Kubota, Shinichi Takahashi
Cast Ken Watanabe, Akira Emoto, Koichi Sato, Yuya Yagira, Shioli Kutsuna, Eiko Koike
Cinematographer Norimichi Kasamatsu

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