Why swordplay beats firepower every time
Guns are dumb.
It takes no real skill to pull a trigger, and even less courage.
Death can be dealt so easily and so impersonally with a gun that life - human or animal - is utterly devalued.
Killing becomes a casual decision.
Swords, on the other hand, are not casual. They require skill, athleticism, even artistry.
You have to get up close with a sword, putting your own life in peril.
There's a romance to them, a beauty in the way they look and richness to the way they're crafted.
Shining steel forged by hand.
Of course it would still suck being hacked up by a sword, but when it comes to movies and such, there's absolutely no question that they're way cooler than guns.
Exhibit A: Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno, opening in theatres here tomorrow.
In the film, swordsman Kenshin is a former assassin who defends the new Japanese government against a mad rebel - and he's glorious.
Let's take a closer look at Kenshin and some of his greatest swashbuckling fellows.
RUROUNI KENSHIN: KYOTO INFERNO
You'll never see a sexier guy than Takeru Satoh as Himura Kenshin.
Satoh may be as pretty as a girl, but with a sword in his hand he gets that extra boost of bad-boy manliness - deadly and dashing.
The 25-year-old has been acting in TV and films since 2007, but this is his biggest role to date.
Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno is the sequel to Rurouni Kenshin, a live-action adaptation of a mega-popular manga and anime series from the 90s.
The swordsman with a distinctive X-scar on his cheek is a former assassin who has sworn off killing, and now uses a unique reverse-edged sword, so that he can deal non-lethal blows.
His mission is to stop the evil Shishio (Tatsuya Fujiwara), who is out for revenge after being burned and betrayed by the new government.
As expected, the sword-fights are the highlights of the film.
Kenshin always starts from his trademark crouched position, quickly launching himself into battle, zipping and twirling around his opponents with balletic grace.
Whether fighting a couple of lowly goons, or his nemesis Shishio, it's a sight to behold - no gunfight is ever so pretty.
Of course, a handsome fella like Kenshin doesn't spend all his time fighting, he also has a lovely lady friend in Kamiya Kaoru (Emi Takei).
How could she resist?
An eternal symbol of alpha-maleness, a sword gives a guy swagger like nothing else.
1. Legolas (Orlando Bloom) in The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug (2013)
2. Jon Snow (Kit Harington) in Game of Thrones (2014)
3. Himura Kenshin (Takeru Satoh) in Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno (2014)
4. Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) in Star Wars Episode VI: Return Of The Jedi (1983)
5. Westley (Cary Elwes) in The Princess Bride (1987)
Swords don't just rule on movie screens and TV shows, they also get a lot of play in goofy music videos like Black Widow.
It's the latest effort from Iggy Azalea, with her living out her Kill Bill fantasies - it even features Tarantino favourite Michael Madson.
Iggy plays a waitress who dreams of taking out Madsen's rude customer.
In her dream she's a catsuit-wearing, motorcycle-riding, sword-wielding hellion - just like Uma was - and it's a lot of silly fun.
1. Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) in Pirates Of The Caribbean: The Curse Of The Black Pearl (2003)
2. The Black Knight (John Cleese) Monty Python And The Holy Grail (1975)
3. William Thatcher (Heath Ledger) in A Knight's Tale (2001)
4. Thadeous (Danny McBride) in Your Highness (2011)
5. Iggy Azalea in Black Widow (2014)
GAME OF THRONES
There has never, ever, ever been a gunfight as thrilling as the sword fight between The Hound (Rory McCann) and Brienne (Gwendoline Christie) in last season's finale.
The giantess Brienne, with her Valyrian steel blade Oathkeeper, is formidable, to say the least. But there're few in Westeros more fearsome than Sandor Clegane.
Duelling over the fate of the orphaned Arya Stark (Maisie Williams), the pair slash out their differences on a bleak mountainside, brutally hacking at each other in a fight that eventually devolves into groin kicking, rock pounding, head-butting, ear-biting and finally just plain punching.
What makes the sequence so gripping is that we love BOTH characters, and when it comes to its startling conclusion, it's both a relief and a heartbreak.
The battle lasts three minutes, and it's three minutes of utter "wow".
THE MOST SAVAGE
1. Conan (Arnold Schwarzenegger) in Conan The Barbarian (1982)
2. The Bride (Uma Thurman) in Kill Bill (2003)
3. Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie) in Game Of Thrones (2014)
4. Maximus (Russell Crowe) in Gladiator (2000)
5. Inigo Montoya (Many Patinkin) in The Princess Bride (1987)