Written in connection with the current Akira Kurosawa retrospective in Santa Monica, USA, the following article published in the Daily Trojan is a brief look at the depiction of war in Yojimbo and Rashomon.
Both films question what it is we pursue in war or local violence. The dance of shade and light in the picturesque grove conjures an optical illusion, fooling the eye and mind with dazzling displays of nature’s virtuosity and causing us to hope for a simpler era of the straightforward. What the nomadic bodyguard and the killing in the grove depict, then, are not solely tales of subjectivity and loneliness, but a kind of cultural death, of bereavement.
You can read the full article here: Senseis and samurais: the gory films of Akira Kurosawa. Note that it is spread on two (relatively short) pages.