Ninja Assassin Review
Written by: DarkwingMantis
I have always believed that there are really only 2 kinds of movies out there.
1) The kind of film that has something to say. Films like Forest Gump, Miracle on 34th Street and Peaceful Warrior. These films have something dynamic in the story, that uplifts us, that teaches us and most importantly, inspires us.
2) The kind of film that does nothing but entertain. These films do not rise above any kind of preconceived notions about what it is, accepts that and runs with it. Many, today, call these movies "Popcorn" fare. You know the type. A movie that you sit down with friends and watch over a tub of popcorn, shut your mind off, and enjoy the ride.
Today I have found a movie that falls into the second category, yes, but it does something more.
Ninja Assassin, a movie with a title much akin to Snakes on a Plane, is simply that. A movie about Ninja Assassins. What this movie does, though, is takes the Popcorn mentality and revels in it. Hmmm, Maybe revel is to soft of a word. Wallows? No, that doesn't do Ninja Assassins justice. Soaks? No. Parties? That sounds about right. This movie takes popcorn fair and throws a party around it. The kind of party where you wake up 300 miles from home, next to some hot person that you may or may not have had the best sex of your life with, and you discover that you have gotten a tattoo when you finally crawl your ass out of bed and look in the mirror.
The plot line is quite simple. For thousand of years a secret society of ninja's have provided assassins for governments, with the payment of 100 pounds of gold, or the monetary equivalent. Raizo is stolen from his family and trained in the way of the ninja assassin. After watching his friend die at the hands of his "father", the head of the assassin clan, Raizo vows vengeance, saving their targets from certain death.
Flash forward a couple years.
Mika, a forensic investigator working for the government, is hot on the trail of this ninja clan, when she too is targeted for death. Mika may be the only person who can bring Raizo to his goal of destroying the clan once and for all.
Thin plot? Hell ya. But really, that's all it needs.
Think of this movie as The Terminator with Ninja's and you have a basic outline of what this movie is.
But that's just the start.
The action sequences is where this movie lives or dies, and let me tell you, it lives a beautiful (albeit bloody) life. The action is fast and furious, rarely letting you take a breath between ninja battles, and when it does, you better get that breath, because you'll be holding that one for a while again. The sheer physicality of this film staggers me. This movie also has the best use of Ninja Stars I've ever seen
My one complaint, and this is truly becoming a trend, is the CGI blood. HOWEVER... this movie handles it well, in most spots. Since a ninja thrives in the dark, this is where they use the blood, which covers it nicely.
And the blood. Oh my fucking god, is there a lot of it. This movie almost rivals Dead Alive for the sheer amount of blood spilled, limbs removed, and ninjas disemboweled.
The final battle between Raizo and his father is one of the most beautiful fight scenes ever put to the screen. However, when I said the film handles the CGI blood well in most spots, here is where it can be the most detracting, but fuck it, the fight is too cool for that to bring it down to hard.
Ninja Assassin is sheer beautiful violence, and really, that's all it needs to be.
Ninja Assassin gets a great 8 Ninja Stars out of 10