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Samurai Champloo

Posted at 4:20 PM on October 9, 2006 by Euan Kerr

Malcolm the 15 year old and I watched the last episode of Shinichiro Watanabe's "Samurai Champloo" over the weekend.

It was a slightly somber occasion as the 20-odd episodes have been an absolute delight and now we will have to find another series to share. A couple of Movie Natters readers suggested checking it out, and so I am open for any more ideas!

If you haven't seen "Samurai Champloo" (it's available on cable and DVD. You can find some clips here.) it's well worth checking out. It's a blend of Japanese history, samurai ethics, soap opera, comedy, and hip hop. All that with a compelling plotline and a surprise ending too. Set at a time a couple of hundred years ago, a young woman called Fuu convinces two ronin, Mugen and Jin, to join her on a quest to find a mysterious "samurai who smells of sunflowers" who will help her fulfill her destiny. They have many adventures along the way.

All of them have character flaws.

Fuu is a spacey waitress who has regularly slips into "annoying little sister mode."

Mugen is a superb with a swords, but is wild, undisciplined and uncouth.
Jin is also a superior warrior, and Mugen's opposite in many ways, cool and calculated. All three are clearly searching for something beyond the elusive sunflower samurai.

Shinichiro Watanabe also created the futuristic bounty hunter story "Cowboy Bebop." Reportedly he is working on a film now called "Genius Party" although he admits he hates the title.

Anyway, Malc and I will take a crack at the "Cowboy Bebop" series now, but as I saw I am open to any suggestions....

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