Sword of Desperation

Directed by Hideyuki Hirayama
Music Video Distributors, Inc.
114 Minutes
Action, Asian
Not Rated
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In order to save his fief, expert swordman KANEMI Sanzaemon publicly assassinates his lord's favorite concubine. Instead of being beheaded, he is sentenced to solitary confinement for one year, then ordered to serve as the lord's bodyguard. This tale of honor, intrigue and deception inevitably ends in bloodshed and betrayal. Based on the novel by Shohei FUJISAWA, author of the Oscar-nominated 'The Twilight Samurai'.


  • Etsushi Toyokawa
  • Chizuru Ikewaki
  • Tsumami Edamame
  • Highest Rating
    "If you're a bushido junkie, there's probably no better film for you than Sword of Desperation."
    Washington City Paper
  • Highest Rating
    "[O]ne of the best modern jidaigeki we have seen the last decade."
    Panos Kotzathanasis, Asian Movie Pulse
  • Highest Rating
    "[T]his samurai drama is still a welcome addition to the genre. "
    Manfred Selzer, Asian Movie Web
  • Highest Rating
    "This film is sheer excellence from top to bottom."
    About Heroes
  • Highest Rating
    "What makes Sword of Desperation special in this reviewer's eyes is its magnificent conclusion."
    DC Film Review
  • Highest Rating
    "You won't be disappointed. Recommended."
    Sound View

Awards & Recognition

Best Actor
Kinema Junpo Awards
Golden Hugo
Chicago Int'l. Film Festival
Six Categories
Awards of the Japanese Academy