The Hidden Blade


The Hidden Blade concerns Yaichiro, a warrior who must leave his family in the care of two other samurai after he answers a request for his services in another town. Muenezo and Samon do their best to protect the family when they come under attack during Yaichiro's absence.

Director: Yôji Yamada

Starring: Ken Ogata, Hidetaka Yoshioka, Min Tanaka, Nenji Kobayashi, Reiko Takashima


  • Enormously enjoyable.

    Wesley Morris - The Boston Globe

    20 January 2013

  • Casually paced and filled with telling detail, Yamada's delicate drama with swordplay (there's not much, but what there is packs an emotional wallop) transcends its specific setting in its depiction of Katagiri's internal struggle.

    Maitland McDonagh - TV Guide

    20 January 2013

  • The Hidden Blade is tranquil, touching, and, in its climactic sword fight, excitingly real.

    Owen Gleiberman - Entertainment Weekly

    20 January 2013

  • Yamada's decidedly undazzling yet expressive filmmaking approaches classicism, from a sensei training session captured in one lengthy shot to the final showdown, seen with shifting points of view that suggest a relativist unease with the cut-and-dried judgments of war culture.

    Michael Atkinson - Village Voice

    20 January 2013

  • Deeply affecting, "Blade'' portrays an oddly elegant way of life that will soon be like the era in that other movie, "Gone With the Wind."

    Ruthe Stein - The San Francisco Chronicle

    20 January 2013


  • Best Art Direction

    Awards of the Japanese Academy (2005)

  • Yôji Yamada

    Berlin International Film Festival (2005)

  • Best Actress

    Hochi Film Awards (2004)

  • Best Supporting Actress

    Mainichi Film Concours (2005)

  • Yôji Yamada

    Valladolid International Film Festival (2005)