Oscar Andersson’s review published on Letterboxd:
Rewatching this just a few months after I first saw it because I've been thinking about it on and off for these months.
Looking at it again, I truly cant find any major flaws, and no real complaints aside from two pretty insignificant nitpicks.
Great story with great suspense, providing a great commentary on honor and structure. Tatsuya Nakadai is perfect in the role, playing it mostly pretty stoically, making the outbursts of emotion more engaging. The swordplay using real swords is a cool detail that made the swordfights that much more interesting for me on the rewatch.
It uses a perfect amount of violence and gruesomeness to drive home it's point, making that one Harakiri scene a true horror to watch.
This is the best Kobayashi has ever done, and that says a lot.
This is the best Jidai-geki I have ever seen, which also says a lot.
This is truly one of the best movies I have ever seen.