Yep, my first movie review of the year and it stars Keanu Reeves! Not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing … it just is, well, something.
I have to say, when I first saw the preview for this one, I had mixed feelings. While I am a movie buff, Asian-themed movies don’t make me swoon. I have nothing against them, but I don’t generally pick them when I’m in a movie-watching mood. Don’t hate me!
However, the plot in this one was very intriguing. Kind of reminded me of 300, but not as gory and elegantly aggressive. That’s the best way I can describe it: elegantly aggressive.
The storyline is about these samurai warriors who seeks revenge after a rival clan takes over their village through witchcraft. And they do it against the head shogun’s orders. Of course the head shogun wasn’t aware that the rival clan had a witch and that this witch caused all the drama, but that’s part of the story, right? That’s the basic plot and while it doesn’t seem such a big deal, it’s a really great story.
It’s also based on an actual 18th century Japanese tale. It’s one of the most celebrated samurai stories of Japan! There’s a monument dedicated to these warriors and everything. How cool is that?! And that’s probably another reason this story fascinated me. It called to the historian part of me. Chris Morgan and Hossein Amini did a good job with the screenplay.
So, aside from the pretty cool plot, the graphics was also well done. It had the right amount to balance the feel without feeling too fake. I really loved the courtyard scene when the warriors stormed their rival’s castle. The witch. The duel. It was one of my favorites. A close second was the scene in the demon city. Yes, I did say demon city.
The acting was okay, too. It’s the perfect role for Keanu Reeves and I’ve watched other Hiroyuki Sanada films and he never disappoints. It’s good to see him star on the American screen–first with Wolverine and now with 47 Ronin, awesomeness! Rinko Kikuchi was excellent as the witch. It was a good cast. They did great on-screen.
Great plot. Great graphics. Great acting. Overall, it was a good movie and I’m glad to see it on the big screen. Because of the nice graphics, I’d go blu-ray on this one. While it wasn’t James Cameron’s Avatar-worthy graphics, it is visually appealing.
Good job, Carl Rinsch!