Death of a Tea Master


Drama / History

IMDb Rating 7.0 10 332

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Plot summary

Uploaded by: FREEMAN


Top cast

Toshirô Mifune as Rikyu Sen-no

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by hmsgroop 10 / 10

A flame in the wind

It seems to me that the film is one of the best of Mifune's films (if not THE best). One can read about the Japanese culture for years, but the film makes one feel the very essence, the very soul of Japan. It is a kind of 'satori' in itself, as one has no need for words, it's a kind of living-in. I think that the scene when Mifune's character is performing a tea ceremony in front of the army that is to go to battle next day and most probably perish is unsurpassed in beauty and laconic, but forceful expression.

It is also a story of conflict between art and power, and one more proof of the independence of art and of an artist's courage. The film shows that one can rebel in one's art, and the effect will be much greater than any other form of rebellion. It is also a tale of human dignity and the tragic solitude of a man in the transitory world. This is not a film for enthusiasts of sword-brandishing and rivers of blood, it is a film for those who can see beyond the lines.

Reviewed by samxxxul 8 / 10

Feels like a Bittersweet Tea... Recreates the period beautifully..!

A magnificent work of Japanese cinematic art starring Mifune Toshiro. It tells the story of what led to the death of Sen no Rikyu, the influential sixteenth-century tea master who served the warlord Hideyoshi. Drawn from the pages of Japanese history! In Kei Kumai's vision on this subject, a tension can be established between the physical and the spiritual, between the shadow of the forces and the perspective and the acquisition of wisdom when compared to Hiroshi Teshigahara's Rikyu which leaned more on the political and social context while Death of a Tea Master focused on the philosophy. The cinematography is spectacular, of being impressed. The vivid color pattern in some scenes, which contrasts somewhat with the somewhat somber vision of some of his other features, would later be recovered in some passages in The Sea Is Watching (2002). The movies dialogue is brief and to the point. Some statements are very profound and uses symbolism to push the narrative. This production was the great turning point in Kei Kumai's career. Not in the sense of its aesthetics or in the sense of remuneration or recognition, but in terms of its objective in cinema. One of the best films ever made in Japan. One of the greatest productions in world cinema with moderate budget and it captures the very essence of its title, thoroughly justifying it, etches out characters. And this is why the ending plays as the perfect emotional pay-off for a film so full of frustrating inhibitions, a light of hope after an eternity spent. Strongly recommended if you love art-house cinema, and especially if samurai dramas are your thing.

Reviewed by ashtonlee-writer 8 / 10

Not your typical jidai geki but absolutely worth watching

I can't compare this movie to anything other than Parsifal. A very different story and genre, but somehow had the same spiritual, comtemplative, ceremonial vibe. It's the kind of work that makes you think and it's more about a certain feeling and aesthetic than a plot. The kind that's worth rewatching and pondering about.

The cinematography is also gorgeous. Not a single item or colour out of place. Perfect in a melancholy way.

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