Okay... so, genre mash-ups. What do you think when you see a genre mash-up? Fun times, right? Fighting? All that stuff?
Well... we have our first fairly big genre mash-up that I've seen today.
I'll bring it to today's movie soon enough.
The Warrior's Way
Yang (Jang Dong-gun) is a warrior who has sworn to kill every person in a rival clan of his own. However, when he saves a baby, his own clan chases him. Thus, Yang escapes to a small town in the American West to find somewhere safe for him and the baby to hide. While there, he encounters Ron (Geoffrey Rush) and Lynne (Kate Bosworth), and comes to like his new way of life there, right up until a nameless Colonel (Danny Huston) goes around, doing his typical mischief on the town. Thus, Yang resolves to... yeah, you get the idea.
I'll just get to the good stuff...
Which is never used in the fucking movie! Damn it, trailer! I guess this is the most important problem I have with this movie: it doesn't give us our pay-off soon enough. When we see a mash-up of genres, we expect to see a lot more action than we're given here. But pretty much the entire movie is a ninja getting used to life in the West. No, really. In fact, the fact that Yang's being chased by his own clan is sort of only touched on.
Fortunately for us, when the genre-mash-up finally comes, it's a little more rewarding than you'd think. While it never fully reaches the apex of how creative it can get by having ninjas clash with cowboys, it manages to create a reasonably fun time with some fairly fun action set pieces. And the best part is that this final action scene is the most substantial action scene in the movie: pretty much every action scene before hand is generally either too short or not engaging enough for us to care.
But until then, we get treated to a bunch of scenes of... character development. I'll admit, I didn't mind the character development, and honestly, I give the film-makers props for trying to get us to relate to the characters. (After all, action scenes do get better when people you care about are fighting.) The only problem is... it takes itself far too seriously during these scenes. It's at its best when it's being playful and knows what it is, but it doesn't always seem to know that it's not trying to be completely serious.
It also hosts some fairly atrocious special effects; the CGI was very conspicuous in this movie. The acting was surprisingly competent, thankfully: everyone was fairly good in their roles. And yes, this includes the baby.
It's... a bit tough to say how much of a mixed bag The Warrior's Way is. On the one hand, it doesn't have enough action, and takes itself too seriously. But on the other hand, when the mash-up finally happens, it's actually pretty fun, and you have to give the film-makers credit for at least trying to get us to sympathize with the characters. So all things considered, it's only really okay. But that's not a bad thing.
If you want to go see it, go see it. If you don't want to go see it, don't.
This is Herr Wozzeck Reviews. I'll see you guys next time.
P.S. Dear Regal Cinemas:
WHY THE FUCK AREN'T YOU PLAYING BLACK SWAN CLOSE TO WHERE I LIVE? I HAD TO WALK A HALF HOUR TO FIND OUT THE SCREENING I WANTED TO ATTEND WAS SOLD OUT! DAMN IT, REGAL CINEMAS!
Sorry, I had to get that off my chest. I'll see you guys next time with a review of Black Swan.