I remembered the first film, the seaweed waving in the river, the parting on the bridge, like a film I'd seen a long, long time ago and didn't remember...it made me sad.

Maybe I didn't. Maybe I hadn't seen it all. The next two in the series, they're on their own, I've no recollection whatsoever. 

It's Cambell's "The Hero's Journey", but in Japanese and some decades before he wrote it. It's "El Topo" without the Acid. It's genius, and in countless tiny things brilliant and without peer, it's that rare film (trilogy) - that hired a proper writer and director, and the results are clear...