Thursday, July 25, 2013

Movie Review - 13 Assassins (2010)

In the final years of the samurai, Japan is at an age of peace.  This period of calm is threatened when Lord Matsudaira Naritsugu is at the verge of becoming one of the highest ranked in the land.  Naritsugu has no conscience, murdering and raping at will.  Shinzaemon Shimada, a veteran samurai, is chosen to find the best warriors for a suicide mission to attack an army and assassinate Naritsugu.

Minus the scene with a small herd of fake looking CG bulls, this remake delivers a great amount of visceral thrills.  Each set piece is a sight to behold as 13 men take on hundreds of soldiers.  Even though almost half of the movie is immersed in action, the creators take their time in developing motivation for each main character:  an old samurai grateful for the opportunity to die nobly, a head samurai upholding allegiance to an evil lord, and many more.

Every sword fight is captured and cut harmoniously well.  In a day and age where action cohesion is held second to special effects and chaos, it is refreshing to watch real men duel in the most classic sense.  It is rare to find contemporary action films where you know exactly what is happening in every shot.    


13 Assassins is currently available for stream on Netflix

Rated R for sequences of bloody violence, some disturbing images and brief nudity



Post a Comment