Sunday, November 28, 2010
Reign of the Assassins (2010)
Produced by John Woo and staring Michelle Yoeh this is one of the real finds of 2010.
I really loved how this film mixed action and romance to make a film that is so much more than the sum of it's parts.
The plot has Michelle Yoeh as an assassin who breaks from her clan and takes with her half of the mummified body of a dead holy man. She is pursued of course, and through a series of events ends up falling in love with a nice man in the town she is hiding in. Of course things don't remain calm and it isn't long before Yoeh has to use her skills to keep herself and her love safe. This leads to further complications.
I don't want to over sell this film as an action film, to be certain there is a great deal, all of it wonderful, but the real reason this film rocks and is possibly destined to end up on my best of the year list is the fact that at it heart this is a story about people. While it's mostly about the two people at the center, Yoeh and her lover, its also about the people around them, both good and bad. When was the last time that the death of one of villains brought a tear to your eye?
Honestly this is one of those rare films that is about people even as the swords are flashing. Its the film that I had hoped that Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon was going to be.
You need to see this film. Its a film that takes the tropes of the martial arts genre and turns them into something special by going the extra mile and giving us fully formed characters on every level.
Currently out on import DVD, this is a film to put on your list of films to see.