Friday, March 5, 2010

Ninja Assassin (2009)

Ninja Assassin is a cliché-ridden piece of mainstream-junk. But what a piece of cliché-ridden piece of mainstream-junk! My boyfriend turned to me during one of the action sequences and said "Like ballons of blood!", and yes - that's the biggest truth I've heard in a while. But I want to take the bad things first. In this story of revenge, the story is weak. Very weak, and you've seen it a thousand times before - often better - and I can't even imagine how they managed to extend the script to something that could be a feature length movie. Then we have the flashbacks, that effective stops the story every five minute or so. And if you can live with the fact that there's only KOREAN Ninjas in this movie - Sung Kang, Randall Duk Kim, Ill-Young Kim, Rain, Yoon Sungwoong, Joon Lee, Rick Yune + two female Ninjas of Vietnamese heritage - you will experience a fucking violent movie.

This movie is so blood that it makes 300, Rambo and Punisher: War Zone seem quite dry in comparison. People more or less explodes in bloods and limbs here, bright very red blood too. There's pieces of bodies, cut up bellies, decapitations and I have no idea of how many more ways to kill a human being! The fights are very fast and often in the dark (they're Ninjas you know), but I like them and it at least look good. Of course there's no gritty violence, nothing like Bronson or all these cool Korean thrillers. It's very stylish, very bloody and everything looks expensive. Well, it's shot in Europe so it has a minor touch of Nu Image and Steven Seagal in the locations, but with a lot more blood.

Did I mention that this movie was bloody? I'm not sure. But now you know!

Except the blood (here we go again!), there's one awesome factor with Ninja Assassin. It's not all the hunky Asian men, which is nice to, but in the role of the bad guy there's no one else than... Sho Kosugi! He's old and wrinkly, but God... he's so great, he's like human nature force. His voice, the lines they've given him, the final fights. This is a case of genius casting, and this really shows what a marvelous and powerful actor Kosugi is. I felt uncomfortable with his character, and when he's doing his evil deeds you believe the old man is evil. One of the best baddies I've seen in a Hollywood-movie in many years.

Don't expect this movie to get the Nobel Price in chemistry or something. This stupid and brutal and... and very hard to dislike.

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