Set in 1861, Katagiri (Nagase) is a lower-caste samurai who has a forbidden love for serving girl Kie (Matsu), who he rescues from domestic abuse. He's also troubled by being ordered to kill an old comrade, Hazama (Ozawa), who plotted against the Shogunate and has escaped from confinement. Based on the short stories of Shuhei Fujisawa. The Japanese title, "Hidden Blade: The Devil's Claw," refers to a unique sword maneuver. Japanese with subtitles.