47 RONIN Home Entertainment Generic Broadcast Transcript with Keanu Reeves (Kai) Q: One of the things I really like about the film is that you really feel the blows in the fight scenes. There is not a lot of CGI, and it is very visceral. I imagine there was a lot of trust there while you were preparing for that? A: Yes, absolutely. You are swinging a sword and often times you are swinging a steel sword, so if you make a mistake there could be consequences. That also adds a certain kind of excitement to it all when you are dealing with real swords and having to block. I got to work with Hiroyuki Sanada (Ôishi), and he is amazing, Hiro-san. He was really gracious and helpful with just some techniques and footwork and stuff, because he and I had a pretty good fight. So there is trust, but he is so good. I am kind of slow and trying, but he has techniques to make even...he's like Michael Jordan or any great athlete in a team sport. He can make those around him better, so I had that benefit as well of his expertise.
Q: What are the best and worst parts of samurai training? A: You know, there is nothing bad about it. I am a bit of a perfectionist, so maybe I didn't get the angle quite right. Certainly with the stances, until you do enough practice they are very physically demanding. Until you get the body memory of it, it is frustrating.
Q: You have two different film worlds – the River's Edge, Prince of Pennsylvania, Scanner Darkly side, and the Constantine and big-budget side. What lures you into a project like this after all these years? A: For me, specifically with 47 Ronin, it was the story. There has always got to be a story to it, and this is an ambitious film. It's got scale and scope, but it's also very intimate and human. It's about honor and place and home and love, and one of the things that is great with 47 Ronin and sometimes with a studio film, is the world creation. If you are in this kind of aspect - the sets, costumes, the time, all of the resources that can go into creating a world -- that's cool.
Q: You have said that you relate to the story as a Westerner, but what I think is really interesting is there is a sense of honor here that is almost extreme for our modern culture. They are doing something that could lead to their deaths by rebelling in the way that they do. How do you tap into that? It seems like that is something that is not so prevalent in our culture. A: Well, I don't know. Live free or die. That's kind of fundamental, isn't it? I think that when we speak about home and place, the sacrifices that people make and the commitment that humans make for... I should not just even say that, but just home and the place and the energy that goes into thinking about that and cultivating it, our attachment to home and who we are, I think it's very relatable.