47 Ronin (2013)

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47 Ronin is a new action film about a group of samurai out to avenge their master. Interesting note: samurai stories are always about avenging masters. Maybe these masters should stop getting hurt, and there’d be less stories of their students slaughtering everyone in their path.

This particular samurai story supposedly comes from an old legend. Basically, the samurai, when they have no master, are considered Ronin, hence the title. Ronin were dangerous business, since they were capable fighters, but didn’t have any loyalties. Once upon a time, a small band of skilled fighters could be real trouble. It’s sorta like an inner city gang today, except more skilled.

The main Ronin is no doubt fulfilling some prophecy or another, and he’s a half breed. I guess that means half Asian, half white guy, since it’s Keanu Reeves, but the idea is that he has the blood of a warrior, but is never treated as such. He gets thrown in prison at one point and has to fight to survive. I suppose that’s where he’ll learn to fight.

Anyways, an evil queen is actually a demon/dragon, and she’s burned and destroyed much of Japan. Keanu gets together with a bunch of other Ronin and they do their best to storm the castle and restore order to the world.

Fun fact: this is likely just one of the training games in the Matrix. This is how he learned Jiu Jitsu.

47 Ronin

47 Ronin comes from director Carl Rinsch. He’s never directed a feature before, but I get the impression he’s a music video/commercial director. Based on the trailer he certainly has a feel for special effects.

Chris Morgan, Hossein Amini and Walter Hamada wrote the screenplay. Hamada just provided some part of the story, but Morgan and Amini have a fair amount of past success, with Morgan having written the last couple Fast and Furious films, and Amini working on Snow White and the Huntsman and Drive.

Pictures

47 Ronin Trailer

47 Ronin Release Date

December 25, 2013.

Who’s In It?

Keanu Reeves . . . Hiro
Tadanobu Asano . . . Lord Kira 
Ken Watanabe
Hiroyuki Sanada . . . Kuranosuke Ôishi 
Rinko Kikuchi . . . Mizuki 
Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa . . . Shogun

What’s Good About It?

47 Ronin looks a little like a samurai version of 300. And that’s a good thing. Keanu Reeves, while not much of a star these days, is still capable of leading an action film, and he looks good in the trailer.

What’s Bad About It?

47 Ronin has been on the backburner for a long time. Supposedly it was finished at least a year ago, and the studio didn’t know how to market it. If it was good, they’d have had it out already.

Our Clever Prediction

I’m a little worried about 47 Ronin. The trailer looks good, and I feel like it has definite potential, but the fact that the studio hasn’t released it yet is too big of a warning sign to ignore. Don’t get too excited for this one.