The Last Samurai Essay

746 Words3 Pages
“The Last Samurai” is a film centered around the idea of journeying physically, spiritually, emotionally and mentally. We witness these journeys not only through observations of a character going through a personal transformation but a whole culture around him who is likewise in turmoil. This film allows us to join in on an adventure and journey of the character, the world he enters and the people he meets. The story is based on a time just after the Civil War, a time when the modern western world which had just encroached upon the American West, condemning the Native American, began to engulf traditional Japan as well. The purpose of this film is to give a voice to these people, to share in their struggles and experiences and be…show more content…
This idea of a physical journey is easily conveyed through the use of scenery. We get to witness the extent of the physical journey by viewing the changing environment. This technique is something that not only highlights the actual physical journey, but the extent of the changes that the protagonist is going through in relation to his changing situations. This technique is achieved most effectively by the camera shots used, in particular the use of cinematography and indeed panning. Throughout the film we are taken on the heroic journey of the powerful character of Captain Nathan Algren, a person who travels a great distance, literally and figuratively to find himself and his values. Captain Algren emerges as a truly tormented figure, a man who has lost faith, an extremely vulnerable figure, not your typical stock movie hero. He is a lost soul searching to find his way. Edward Zwick allows you to witness this journey through his use of gradual development throughout the film. As the character discovers, so do you and so on. You are therefore just that bit closer personally to each of the characters, and their journey. Edward Zwick the director has used the technique of characterisation
Open Document