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Rurouni Kenshin, which stars Takeru Satoh as the wanderer Himura Kenshin, has been a wildly popular live-action film series. So far, the series has produced a total of five films: Origins (2012), Kyoto Inferno (2014), The Legend Ends (2014), The Final (2021) and The Beginning (2021).
In each film, Kenshin, also known as Hitokiri Battosai, who wields a reverse-blade sword, is pitted against a strong adversary. Netflix has just dropped The Final, the first of the last two movies in the series, and the last part, The Beginning, is following soon. Here are five things you probably didn’t know about the Rurouni Kenshin movies.
1. The Final and the first three Rurouni Kenshin movies are now on Netflix.
In case you haven’t already heard, Netflix is streaming the first four Rurouni Kenshin movies! From Origins to Kyoto Inferno to The Legend Ends to even the latest The Final, you can have your own movie marathon in the comfort of your home. With each film more than two hours long, be sure to set aside at least eight hours to binge-watch.
2. Takeru Satoh does his own action scenes.
While most actors require a stunt double for action scenes, Satoh prefers to take things into his own hands. The hardworking actor even trained his stamina and honed his sword-fighting skills to produce an impressive performance of Kenshin.
From this action-training video Satoh uploaded to his YouTube channel, we can see him dashing around, bouncing off walls and skilfully taking out the “enemies”.
3. Kenshin Himura has had two wives.
In the live-action films, Kaoru Kamiya (played by Emi Takei) has been portrayed only as the love interest of Kenshin. However, in the manga, the couple got married and even had a son. After watching The Final, you will also realise that Kenshin had a first wife named Tomoe Yukishiro who died.
The story about Tomoe features in The Final, in which Tomoe’s brother Enishi (played by Mackenyu Arata) is seeking revenge on Kenshin. His goal is not to kill Kenshin though; he wants Kenshin to suffer for causing the death of his sister. How Kenshin got the cross-shaped scar on his face will also be revealed in The Final!
4. Rurouni Kenshin movies have been using One Ok Rock’s songs as theme songs.
Apart from Renegade, which was co-written by Ed Sheeran, being used as the theme song for The Final, it was also announced that Broken Heart Of Gold will be used for The Beginning. But the collaboration between Rurouni Kenshin and One Ok Rock actually goes way back to the first movie: Origins used the song The Beginning; Kyoto Inferno used Mighty Long Fall; and The Legend Ends used Heartache.
5. Takeru Satoh had co-starred with multiple actors in Rurouni Kenshin in other movies.
The Rurouni Kenshin film series has not only propelled Satoh to fame, but also featured a number of popular Japanese actors. Among these actors, there are three whom Satoh had co-starred with in other movies.
Go Ayano, who appeared in Origins as one of Kanryu’s men, starred in Ajin: Demi-human with Satoh. Ryunosuke Kamiki, who portrayed Sojiro Seta in Kyoto Inferno, The Legend Ends and The Final, also co-starred with Satoh in Bakuman. Issey Takahashi, who played young Kenshin’s mentor Katsura Kogoro in The Beginning, has starred in Million Dollar Man with Satoh.
There is no word yet on the Netflix release date for The Beginning, ironically the last film in the series, though it was just released in theatres in Japan on 4 June. Let’s hope the wait is not too long!
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