An Analisis Of The Last Samurai English Literature Essay

August 27, 2017 English Literature

Introduction to “ The Last Samurai ” Edward Zwick, the manager of “ fable of the autumn ” , co-produced this 2003 war and play movie, based on a true narrative picturing award and bravery battling against corruptness and greed. Nathan Algren ( Tom sail ) is an American civil war veteran who carries moral cicatrixs of his triumph against the native Indians. As he drowns his guilt in intoxicant and performs Acts of the Apostless at trade shows in San Francisco, his old commanding officer drags him into run intoing Prince Mitsui, a Nipponese man of affairs who offers Algren a occupation as a military adviser, to develop the Nipponese authorities ground forces.

At that clip, Japan was lead by Emperor Meiji who had a vision of a modernized Japan and a wish to beef up his ground forces and update its public presentation through the latest fire-weapons and war schemes. This is where the struggle arises as the old Nipponese samurai society stands against this rapid transmutation. Lead by Katsumoto ( Ken Watanabe ) a few hundred samurai, Rebel and hence are judged as treasonists and ordered to be marginalized and eliminated. This is where Algren comes into drama to show the power of the rifle and let American bargainers to sell arms to the upgraded Nipponese ground forces to contend against those Rebels.

During the first brush between the unprepared Nipponese regimens and the smattering of courageous samurai, Algren falls and is captured by the enemy. He is so taken to the samurai small town up in the mountains where he learns to interact with them, discovers their civilization and observes their combat methods. During his “ imprisonment ” , a friendly relationship is born between Algren and Katsumoto. They learn to understand each other ‘s cultural disagreements and adapt to each other ‘s characters. He becomes so impregnated with the values that the samurai defend, that he practically becomes more than merely one of them and ends up taking them along sides Katsumoto into conflict confronting his ain battalion.

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The chief characters:

Two chief supporters can be discerned in the secret plan: Algren and Katsumoto. Both of them display different types of leadings that might be correlated to their divergent cultural differences. American population tends to be more explicit in their manners of look when Nipponese might connote their messages in indirect signifiers. Algren ‘s fiery personality contrasts to Katsumoto ‘s reserved and introverted character. When the samurai enjoys minutes of silence, the captain is frustrated with his non-talkative guard. Other fluctuation in behaviour can be explained with respects to their construct of personal infinite, hierarchy controversy, tradition and aged regard every bit good as individualistic to corporate attitude. Even though, none of the manners can be judged to be better than the other, it is possible to corroborate that Algren ‘s unprompted behaviour sometimes drives him to do determinations that are non in his best involvement. The clip that Katsumoto takes to reflect on issues somehow delays the decision-making procedure but might interpret into wiser and more rational judgement.

The spiritualty of the Nipponese civilization every bit good as their values are ubiquitous in all facets of their lives. Algren is staggered with their devotedness to the flawlessness of their mundane undertakings and is intrigued with the spiritualty that emanates from their beliefs. While he is populating among them he surprisingly discovers the significance of the word “ samurai ” : to function. This is one of the major disagreements between the two work forces and this is the facet of leading that Algren learns from Katsumoto. As the secret plan is happening, the relationship between the two grows from enemies, captive and oppressor, instructor and pupil, spouses with common involvements, even making the friendly relationship province. This extract of values balances out the resonance between them to the point where we see for the first clip an reverse state of affairs with Algren go toing Katsumoto ‘s failings. In the scene predating the concluding conflict, Katsumoto confides in his friend apparently afraid of the result. The emperor had antecedently refused to see his proposal, which broke Katsumoto ‘s religion and hope for a common apprehension. In this state of affairs, Algren actively listens to the interior frights of the great leader and in a really directing manner, efforts to actuate him and re-enforce hope and optimism “ It ‘s non over yet ” ( Quoted from the movie ‘s book ) .

The Leadership Analysis of Nathan Algren:

All through this film, Algren displays attitudes of a magnetic leader that is non nevertheless ever admired for his picks. Even in his minutes of failing, Captain Algren ‘s prima accomplishments are still clearly embedded in his individuality. As the character evolves, many aspects of leading can be observed through the ideals that he represents and unrecorded by. Firstly, award is someway the dominant value in the secret plan as it encompasses truth beyond practicality and efficiency. This is one of the constructs that Captain Algren learned during the clip he spends with the samurai. In the secret plan, award is often interlinked to courage and can be admired in the battle of the warriors and their leaders as much in personal conflicts or field wars. As Algren is confronted to Katsumoto, he discovers a spiritualty such that of the Bushido spirit dwelling in trueness, gallantry, bravery, justness, courtesy, compassion and earnestness. The undermentioned observation grid is a chronological overview description of some of the leading traits that were revealed through Algren ‘s behaviour and places in different scenes. In each state of affairs, the interaction between characters is explained and the facets of leading underlined.

Table – Leadership Analysis of Nathan Algren ‘s behaviour in “ The Last Samurai ”

Leadership Features



Oral Communication Skills:

Theatric public presentation, public speech production

Even in his worst form ( being drunk ) Algren is capable of standing in forepart of the crowd and entertaining them. He attracts their attending and makes them laugh.

At a trade show, Algren displays a rifle show and Tells narratives about the war.

Enunciation, voice tone, volume, gait

Algren plays on the emotions of his audience, utilizing a strong affecting description of the scalping. The tone and volume of his voice drives the receptor to populate the scene he is depicting. He speaks easy at times and so accelerates the sentences to make moving ridges and maintain the hearer in active hearing.

Algren explains how it would experience to scalp an Indian.

Punctuation of address

In his philippic, Algren punctuates his sentences with soundless “ pit Michigans ” during which the hearer is drawn to the narrative and tidal bore to unveil the terminal of it. He besides pronounces words with modulations to stress them.

Body linguistic communication:

Eye contact

Eyess are a powerful tool that captivates hearers and implicates them into the issue at interest. The oculus contact besides establishes the nature of the relationship between the two participants.

Algren explains how it would experience to scalp an Indian.

Facial looks

The emotions are revealed through the expressed facial looks that besides interpret his head province to the environing people. Particularly during the conflicts, Algren ever puts up a clam unflurried look.

Body position, personal infinite

The ability to drag the audience along the duologue, Algren uses his organic structure position to connote intimidated, impressed and concerned reaction from the hearer. At minutes and to deduce the emotions of the narrative, he violates the other individual ‘s personal infinite to make tenseness and reactivity.

Personal traits:


Making direct clear and specific petition with a persuasive attitude is the first counter reaction to the occupation offer. Algren ‘s power of dialogue gets the man of affairs to raise the offer and respond to the captain ‘s petition

Algren is dragged to portion a diner with Nipponese concern adult male that offers him a occupation of war adviser

Intelligence and experience

One of import factor that promotes the credibleness of the captain is his cognition of the undertaking that is required of him. His intelligence allows him to hold a general position of the issue that pushes him to look into farther and dig the largest sum of information possible to construct his onslaught scheme.

In the Nipponese ground forces preparation cantonment, Algren takes involvement in the history of the Samurai

Truthful rules

In this conversation, Algren reminds his co-worker of a conflict they fought side by side when they were given an order they did non agree with. When his co-worker hid behind the hierarchy construction, Algren denounces the immoral determination and admits his obeisance to be a error at that clip

When Algren refuses the occupation offer, his old ground forces co-worker holds a private confab with him


Puting his life on the line to support his point of position is one of the features of Algren that builds the image of a confident leader that is conviction-driven.

To convert the Nipponese man of affairs the ground forces is non ready, Algren asks a soldier to fire at him


Even if the result of the battle is expected, Algren stands strong and battles against the warriors. Under the eyes of Katsumoto, Algren ‘s bravery show reveals his doggedness and restless pursuit for success. This base will be respected by Katsumoto who decides to save his life.

At the terminal of the first conflict against the samurai Rebels, Algren falls and finds himself surrounded by 5 warriors

Problem work outing

The creativeness Algren has, allows him to happen advanced solutions to set up a strong possible onslaught scheme. Thankss to his cunning intuition, the program he sets thrives through and leads the Rebels to a first triumph.

When seeking for an onslaught maneuver, Algren relates to the Spartans wars


In that scene, Algren knows that the opportunities of triumph Lashkar-e-Taiba it be survival at least were really little. Despite being cognizant of the odds at interest, both leaders decide to go on the conflict and contending till the last breath.

Resource-less, Algren, Katsumoto and the battalion of Rebels decide to contend fire weaponries with bare custodies


If Algren ‘s first reaction is to protect his friend from doing a error, he respects his desires and his determinations. He assists him in stoping his life with his ain custodies, hence honouring his petitions.

Katsumoto asks Algren to assist him stop his life in an act of Hara-Kiri

Interaction with others:


One specificity of Algren ‘s leading shows through his direct deduction by taking the battalion on the battle-field certainly but besides by personally implicating himself in the instruction procedure of soldiers. His physical presence and direct deduction breaks the hierarchy barrier that is created by rubrics or places and builds a trust relationship

During the preparation Sessionss, Algren personally attends the soldiers public presentation


This act of acknowledgment farther builds Algren ‘s image as a supportive leader who encourages followings to better execute. This is a strong incentive for the soldiers to do attempts towards bettering their accomplishments.

After wining at hitting mark, Algren taps on the soldier ‘s shoulder


Subsequently to this scene, Algren realizes that his action created perturbation ( even if he was non straight confronted because of his errors ) and he learned to accommodate to a tradition he was non ab initio familiar with to better suit his hostess. In the following similar state of affairs, we see Algren walking into the house barefoot.

The first clip Algren walks into Taka ‘s house, he leaves mud hints on the floor

Directive oppugning

Algren proves to be an effectual active hearer. He foremost keeps quiet Lashkar-e-Taibas Katsumoto talk his frights out without leaping to premises and decisions. Then alternatively of enforcing his ain sentiment or trying to advocate him on the issue, he uses oppugning to direct him to reflect upon other positions that give back Katsumoto his assurance.

Around the fire, Katsumoto is pessimistic as to the conflict result. Algren intervenes.


The characteristic that is on show in this scene might look natural to demo gratitude to a household who has cared for him. However, in the context of the film, Algren ( the captive ) puts his life at interest to support his tormentors.

When the samurai small town is attacked, Algren finds himself supporting Katsumoto ‘s household

All the traits that were listed and described in the above tabular array farther promote Algren ‘s image as a supportive leader who sagely uses his receptive capacities, his conceptual understanding endowment and his innate enterprise. Those features re-enforce his credibleness and well-thought-of figure.

A few quotation marks:

“ What does it intend to be Samurai: To give yourself absolutely to a set of moral rules ; to seek a hush of your head, and to get the hang the manner of the blade. ” – Nathan Algren

“ There is so much here I will ne’er understand. I ‘ve ne’er been a church traveling adult male, and what I ‘ve seen on the field of conflict has led me to oppugn God ‘s intent. But there is so something religious in this topographic point. And though it may everlastingly be vague to me, I can non but be cognizant of its power. ” – Nathan Algren

“ Katsumoto: You believe a adult male can alter his fate?

Nathan Algren: I think a adult male does what he can, until his fate is revealed. ”

“ Emperor Meiji: State me how he died.

Nathan Algren: I will state you how he lived. ”


This analysis portrays the characteristic traits that represent the leading attitudes of Nathan Algren, the chief histrion in the outline. However, another character is deserving being besides studied in his places, rules and uncommon behaviours. Katsumoto, the Samurai Rebel, is the embodiment of a true leader whom followings respect and admire to the point where they would be willing to give their lives for him out of strong belief and fondness. A relevant point to the interaction between the two types of leaders is one of the most of import characteristics of leading sempiternity. That is one of the grounds that caught Katsumoto ‘s attending during his first brush with Algren, watching him persevere in the battle till the terminal. Katsumoto saw in him the spirit of a leader, and the movie ‘s secret plan witnesses the development of the nexus between the two work forces. When the relationship reaches a certain trust and adulthood, Katsumoto ‘s attitude towards Algren become that of a instructor, a trainer, a usher. Katsumoto takes the duty of maneuvering Algren and modeling his character to carry on him to go his replacement. This is how Algren himself becomes “ The Last Samurai ” .


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