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Sword of Desperation

必死剣鳥刺し (Hisshiken Torisashi)

Dir. Hideyuki Hirayama, 2010, Japan, 114 min.

Sword of Desperation Blu-ray cover
Special Edition Blu-ray

Contains the following bonus features:

  • Original Theatrical Trailers

  • Image Gallery

  • Program notes

1080p / Japanese 5.1 & 2.0 DTS-HD MA / English subtitles / Single layer / AVC @ 25 MBPS / REGION A

DVD Edition

Contains the following bonus features:

  • Original Theatrical Trailers

  • Image Gallery

  • Program notes

​480p / Japanese 5.1 Dolby Digital / English subtitles

Blu-ray $19.99   DVD $18.99

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Also available at many fine online retailers.

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© 2010 Sword of Desperation Production Committee

He was sentenced not to death, but to life

Expert swordsman KANEMI Sanzaemon is, first and foremost, a man of principle. In order to save his clan from the corrupting influence of his lord's favorite concubine, he publicly assassinates her, fully expecting it will result in his own death by seppuku. 

Instead, he is sentenced to solitary confinement for an entire year, then released under one inexplicable condition: he must now serve as the lord's bodyguard. 

This thrilling, masterfully stylized tale of honor, intrigue and betrayal culminates in an explosive battle in which nothing is as it appears to be. 


One of the masterworks of modern samurai films


  • Best Actor - Etsushi Toyokawa - Hochi Film Awards (Dec 2010)

  • 6 Nominations - 2011 Japanese Academy Awards


  • 2010 Montreal World Film Festival - World Competition

  • 2011 JAPAN CUTS New York Film Festival of Contemporary Japanese Cinema

Based on the novel by Shohei FUJISAWA, author of the Oscar-nominated "The Twilight Samurai".


Critical Acclaim

"Sword of Desperation is one of the best films I have seen this year." 

– vCinemaShow

"What makes Sword of Desperation special in this reviewer’s eyes is its magnificent conclusion." 

– DC Film Review

"If you’re a bushido junkie, there’s probably no better film for you than Sword of Desperation"

 – Washington City Paper

"Rating: A... From Acting to production, Sword of Desperation hits a home run or should I say cuts them down with beauty and style"

– Anime Radius

"A very cool contemporary samurai film.... another great samurai film, rich and rare and oh so very steeped in bushido. Savor it."

– Asia Shock

"This film is sheer excellence from top to bottom"

– About Heroes

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