Monday 3 March 2014

47 Ronin vs Bunraku

This odd match up has come about simply because I watched them within a day of each other. Also, both have samurai. That's about as far as the similarities go! :P


I'll see your Neo...

47 Ronin is set in the past, when samurai were lawful stupid and the people of Japan spoke Engrish. Keanu Reaves speaks it better than the rest, having been taught by the demons of the woods which makes him an outcast. Still, he longs for the day he can become a samurai and gets his chance sometime after a "hey I'm a bad guy" bad guy shows up and ruins the day with his shape shifting witch ally. There are some all too short fights and very good CG critters along the way but I feel the movie is let down by the main lead girls - especially the "good-sided" one with poor/over acting.

Note: It's very rare that I dislike someone's acting ability (I'm a fan of Steven Seagal), so that says something about the previous line. Also the last part of the movie sucks, regardless if it is based on history. Not the sort of thing I'd like to promote anyway.

...and raise you a Gackt.

Bunraku is set in the future, after an Armageddon has seen the human race throw away all firearms and build cities out of well-designed cardboard. It tells the tale of how a brawler (Josh Hartnet) and a samurai (Gackt) meet up under the guidance of a bartender (Woody Harrelson) to take down the most powerful warrior (Ron Perlman) and his gang of killers that control the odd looking city. This is a very artsy film, but it also has a lot of good fights. There's less CG here and actually more Japanese is spoken in this film (still not a lot) than in 47 Ronin. If you can get over the style of the whole piece and can set aside some disbelief then you are in for a fun ride.

The winner: Bunraku. Easily. It's a pretty good, low thinking, high action film and worth a watch if like me, you enjoy the strange combination of combat and art. If the "art style" has you worried then here's the opening part so you can get a feel for the movie before borrowing it. :)

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