Shigurui – intense slowness

Alternative title Shigurui: Death Frenzy
Studio Madhouse
Genres Action, Drama, Historical
Source Manga (itself based on a novel)
Episodes 12
Season Summer 2007
Director Hiroshi Hamasaki
Music Kiyoshi Yoshida

 

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     It was near the end of September but the sun still climbed high and showered everything with its inescapable piercing rays. Cicadas were mostly hidden in a few trees but their chirping almost drowned slow and sparse beats of drums. Everyone was silent. The daimyo sat under the shadow but the cruel light encompassed everything. He didn’t care. Wide opened unblinking eyes were fixated on the beaten field, his thin lips slightly curled into a cruel smile, ripe with anticipation and excitement. The announcer had just spoken his words. Only the silent crunch of the pebbles was heard as a samurai entered the field. On the other side even more silently appeared his opponent, led by a woman. It seemed like the bleaching light was so thick and all-embracing that it was hard to move through the wall of it. The rivals slowly got into their positions, as if judging one another and trying to pick up the slightest hints about their moves. The public began to stir, seeing that one of the samurai was one-handed and the other was both blind and crippled. How could that be? Isn’t it a disgrace to the Lord? The lord was silent. Two swords were drawn. Not the usual wooden ones, but real. Metal shined as if burning white. The murmuring stopped. The cicadas also seemed to had gone silent. Everything became still as if before the storm. The world was only the white field. Each of the opponents was determined to end everything here. The past didn’t matter anymore. Their women, slightly trembling, both looked stone-faced. They also didn’t matter now. The sun beat down even harder. The match was about to begin.

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