The positive reviews that were received by this movie can also be attributed to the rise in popular nationalism in Japan. IN the decade before the release of the movie, there were voices raised in the popular media in Japan that questioned the notion of Pacific war of Japan (World War II) as being a war of aggression.
A similar nationalistic movement was also developing among the Japanese academia. For example the conservative historians of Japan who were led by the renowned historian Kanji Nishio had introduced a new history textbook. While the critics of this book used that it had ignored the wartime atrocities committed by Japan, the supporters of this book claims that this book was necessary for making the young Japanese people proud of their nation (Masalski, 2003). Although this book was not adopted by most of the schools in Japan, however strong protests were launched by the governments of China and South Korea and at the same time, the citizens of these countries also took to streets to demonstrate their anti-Japanese frenzy. For many persons in Japan, it appeared that the fund will always remain the villain of Asia. As a result, a large number of audiences in Japan considered the movie, The Last Samurai as a reminder of the fact that not all the people outside Japan considered their past in a negative light.
At the same time, there were many persons in Japan who felt certain ambivalence towards being identified as a nationalist due to the fear that they may be associated with organized crime or gangsters. However the viewers of the Last Samurai were able to express their nationalistic sentiments due to the reason that it was a foreign film that had been identified as a Hollywood production.
Similarly for a number of persons in Japan, the right-wing nationalism is related with uyoku for the ultranationalist (who has underworld connections) writing large trucks with blaring patriotic music with a view to intimidate other people. However, this movie was capable of expressing nationalistic sentiments that resulted in a conforming the sense of national pride in some Japanese people. Similarly while dealing with the question that why the Japanese people eagerly adopted the portrayal of their values by a Hollywood movie. In this regard, it can be stated that as a result of the process of over-internationalization, the boundaries of Japanese identity have increasingly being blurred.