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Old 10-18-04, 08:00 PM   #1
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Most realistic Sword battles

We've seen and talked about the most realistically potrayed gun battles like D-Day in Saving Private Ryan, any of the battles in Band of Brothers, or the musket and cannon ball battles of the Patriot to give us a realistic potrayal of how it looked through the eyes of those that were there.

But the sword and shield has been around longer and has a greater effect on our world. Ofcourse by realism we must look at the recent movies from the last decades when the "audience in the movie" style of gritty shooting was created. I love the older movies more than the new, the 50's being my favorite decade by how many of my favorite movies were in that said decade but when it comes to most realistically depicted as if you were back in time to film them i would say the medieval epic Braveheart in its gory depiction of medieval battles and the swords and sandals recent Gladiator in the first battle in the woods in the roman legions vs. the barbarians. Each of the two battles were from the Ancient world and Medieval world respectively.
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Old 10-18-04, 08:04 PM   #2
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Hmm, maybe the new Zatoichi?
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Old 10-18-04, 08:49 PM   #3
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Old 10-18-04, 09:42 PM   #4
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The duel between Liam Neeson and Tim Roth at the end of "Rob Roy" gets my vote. I like how Neeson, who is suffering from a previous injury, gets winded swinging the heavy broadsword around. The fight also looks very natural and unchoreographed, with a very realistic ending.
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Old 10-18-04, 10:05 PM   #5
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Old 10-18-04, 10:18 PM   #6
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You guys are all amateurs........

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Old 10-18-04, 11:05 PM   #7
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Well, most movie swordfighting is never realistic, nor should it be, IMO----"realistic" wouldn't make for very compelling cinema. Real martial arts want to make all the movements as subtle, small and quick as possible, which would not read very well on film. That's partly why fencing and Kendo are not very popular TV sports---the casual viewer can't even tell what's happening. Screen choreography and real martial arts are two very different disciplines, and skill in one often doesn't translate to the other.

But yes, I also liked the choreography in Rob Roy, and I can't remember his name offhand, but I believe it's the same guy who choreographed THe Three Musketeers and the Four Musketeers. He tries to show the swordsmen getting tired, scared, sloppy, etc, and the swordplay styles reflect the values of the characters. Very good stuff.

For any fans of swashbucklers, I would also highly recommend "On Guard"(Le Bossu) the French movie from 1997. Nice movie, great swordfighting scenes. And "Scaramouche", from 1952, has some fantastic fencing scenes.

The Zatoichis are all fantastic swordplay movies as well----great movies on every level.

And for Chinese swordplay, I would have to recommend John Woo's old-school movie "Last Hurrah for Chivalry"----that's got some definite kick-ass swordfighting.

Last edited by Ky-Fi; 10-18-04 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 10-19-04, 12:18 AM   #8
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Give me Seven Samurai, or Braveheart to catch the gory, bloody part of battles.
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Old 10-19-04, 01:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by PopcornTreeCt
You guys are all amateurs........
We're looking for most realistic sword battles.....not "the best film with sword battles". In that regard I'll agree with Salty about Rob Roy and say that it's duels puts Kurosawa's film to shame.
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Old 10-19-04, 02:08 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Salty
The duel between Liam Neeson and Tim Roth at the end of "Rob Roy" gets my vote. I like how Neeson, who is suffering from a previous injury, gets winded swinging the heavy broadsword around. The fight also looks very natural and unchoreographed, with a very realistic ending.
I agree! One of the best sword battles of all time...
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Old 10-19-04, 02:35 AM   #11
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Has anyone seen The Duellists?



I saw a few minutes on TV once and it looked pretty realistic.
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Old 10-19-04, 03:12 AM   #12
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Obi-wan vs. Darth Maul. Seriously one of the most intense sword battles ever. My pulse was racing like mad.
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Old 10-19-04, 04:15 AM   #13
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Quote:
Obi-wan vs. Darth Maul.
A brilliant and visually stunning battle to be sure. But I don't think we can call it gritty or realistic.
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Old 10-19-04, 04:24 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Superboy
Obi-wan vs. Darth Maul. Seriously one of the most intense sword battles ever. My pulse was racing like mad.
The question wasn't asking for intense. It was asking for realistic.
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Old 10-19-04, 06:46 AM   #15
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Say what you will about the movie, the swordplay in The 13th Warrior was very good. You could really sense the weight of the blades. Especially in the duel between Herger (Dennis Storhoi) and Angus.
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Old 10-19-04, 07:57 AM   #16
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Old 10-19-04, 08:10 AM   #17
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to the earlier answers specifically "On Guard", "Rob Roy", and "The Duellists".

While acknowledging the fact that I've neither participated in nor witnessed a to-the-death swordfight, I'd still like to nominate the last fight scene in Japan's The Twilight Samurai (2002) as a good representation of what it must really be like.
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Old 10-19-04, 08:48 AM   #18
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The Three Musketeers (with Michael York) played on the Atlanta PBS station recently, I hadn't seen it before. I didn't watch much of it but was struck by the (intentional) crudeness of the sword fighting. Not a lot of fancy and precise thrusts and parries, but pushing, kicking, hitting with fists, missing the opponent, etc. I don't know if it was "realistic" but I think people fighting to the death with swords would look a lot more like that than some of the precise choreography seen in a lot of movies.
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Old 10-19-04, 09:30 AM   #19
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any of the sword fights in the 1966 Shaw Brother's production:

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Old 10-19-04, 10:01 AM   #20
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Like others in this thread, my first thought was Rob Roy ....
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Old 10-19-04, 10:06 AM   #21
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Old 10-19-04, 10:14 AM   #22
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I seem to remember the fights in Excalibur to be realistic-looking, however I haven't seen it in a few years.
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Old 10-19-04, 10:20 AM   #23
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I'd have to go with the ones in Seven Samurai as the most realistic.
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Old 10-19-04, 10:48 AM   #24
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Richard Lester's 1973 "Three Musketeers". The sword play was hard, gritty and not very pretty. What I always imagined a real sword fight would be.

Also, the duel between Sean Connery and Robert Shaw in "Robin and Marion". I really liked the part when they showed them getting exhausted as the sword fight continued.
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Old 10-19-04, 11:01 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by Duran
I seem to remember the fights in Excalibur to be realistic-looking, however I haven't seen it in a few years.
That's my vote. In reality, swords were not used for fencing or swashbuckling, which is usually the way you see them being used in film. In reality, they are a hack and slash weapon. Unless fully armored, a person can't really absorb more than one or two blows from a sword.

Imagine a side of beef hanging in a meat locker, and then imagine laying into it with a swift sword blow. You'd penetrate it deeply and probably take a huge chunk out of it. It'd be the same way with a human body, folks. You don't last long against that kind of damage.
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