For a better experience on MUBI, update your browser.
2,219 Ratings

The Last Samurai

Directed by Edward Zwick
United States, 2003


Set in the 1870s in Japan, a cynical veteran of the American Civil War embraces the samurai lifestyle and code of honor after he is captured, despite his initial mission to destroy them.

This film is not currently playing on MUBI but 30 other great films are. See what’s now showing
The Last Samurai Directed by Edward Zwick

Awards & Festivals

Academy Awards

2004 | 4 nominations including: Best Actor in a Supporting Role

American Film Institute Awards

2004 | Winner: Movie of the Year

National Board of Review

2003 | 2 wins including: Best Director

Screen Actors Guild Awards

2004 | Nominee: Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role

What are people saying?

  • Filipe F. Coutinho's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    Zwick's appreciation for Ran in full display. He's a creative filmmaker capable of creating remarkable and gorgeous battle sequences. His frames have scope and grandiosity and are filled with color and emotion. However, there is an undeniable element of "the West comes to the rescue" that just doesn't work for me. I'd much preferred if Cruise's character was caught in this war and had less of an active participation.

  • Tigrão's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    It's a great piece of entertainment, gorgeously photographed and really well directed. I also find that, despite the basic Hollywood concept of identification to your "enemies", there is a really interesting historical background, where we can witness the transition between two types of societies, two types of armies, and ultimately, two types of war. Really compelling and really cool epic.

  • Cesar's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    Super f**king white man, captured by some savages, becomes the greatest warrior of the land in a month. So good he's the only one to survive. Hurry up super white man, we've got a few impossible missions for you, time is money, time is money ! Stupid f**king white man.

  • Mugino's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    This is a gross misrepresentation of history. Being Japanese, I was utterly embarrased to be watching this ridiculous, laughable film. I was the only person in the theatre who was guffawing and snorting througout. My least favorite actor in the whole world (Cruise) being in it only made it worse. I would give it zero stars if I could.

  • Zachary T.'s rating of the film The Last Samurai

    Another reverse-captivity narrative written off (perhaps not unfairly) for its gross historical inaccuracies and the use of a white American protagonist (Jules Brunet, who inspired Algren, was French). "The Last Samurai" is nevertheless a beautifully shot, rousing epic, one I find all the more interesting for its marriage of cultures, wobbly though it may be. Inarguably some of Watanabe's most affecting work, too.

  • earman's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    This film is fantastic. It tells a great story and it has something for everyone. It is about redemption,honor and pride.It has riveting action sequences and intellegent dialogue. It is a story about clashing cultures that has a parallel to our historical conflict with Native Americans.Tom Cruise gives an Oscar worthy performance in this powerhouse of a film.

  • angiebasuki's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    Even if it's one of Tom Cruise's best film, but couldn't be considered as a good Japan film at all. Murica always minding other countries business. Tom Cruise is like the white guy in Pocahontas or Avatar, ends up making this film is just about white guys fighting each other with Japanese people and cultures as decorations of the set.

  • Nolan Barth's rating of the film The Last Samurai

    With this film Ed Zwick creates his best film since Glory. This is a sweeping epic filled with grand battles and beautiful cinematography. My favorite moments weren't the giant set pieces, but the small intimate moments that Zwick creates. The real standout is Ken Watanabe, he delivers one of his best performances. However, a lot of the cultural and historical inaccuracies hinder this from being a truly great film.

Related films