War

As in not off. If you want to post about mainstream flicks, this is the forum.

Moderator: Chris Slack

Post Reply
User avatar
Remo D
Posts: 1277
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2000 10:00 pm
Location: Marina, CA U.S.A.
Contact:

War

Post by Remo D » Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:48 pm

Okay--not too long ago, I saw RUSH HOUR 3. And it invoked the Triads. And it ended with the song "War." However, this was NOT intended as any sort of endorsement for the Jet Li/Jason Statham Triad/Yakuza thriller WAR. Which in no way resembles RUSH HOUR 4.

So what IS it good for? Ummmm.... I'm not going to say "absolutely nothing," tempting as that might be. There IS a good movie trying to get out of here. And Corey Yuen does set up some decent bone-crunching martial arts action (there's undoubtedly an "unrated" DVD already being prepared).

Be it KISS OF THE DRAGON, CRADLE 2 THE GRAVE or UNLEASHED, you know what you can depend on Jet Li for--in an AMERICAN action film, of course. And Jason Statham has scored three times in a row for me with the TRANSPORTER films and CRANK.

You'd think the ONE name you could count on to find in the credits would be that of Luc Besson--but he had nothing to do with this... and boy, could this film have used him.

No, they decided to take something of the CRANK approach here--to constantly whip around with the camera, the editing and the soundtrack. But CRANK went all the way with the surreal experience because that was exactly the way to tell such a frantically unbelievable story. WAR gives us the "you killed my partner" vendetta on Statham's part. And Li is playing the old YOJIMBO game between the Triads and the Yakuza. And the cops. And the FBI. It has something to do with valuable horse statues (MacGuffins). And Li performing a massacre in a Yakuza sex den. And Devon Aoki showing up for some great bits of humorous menace as the daughter of one of the bosses. And Kane Kosugi getting his ear sliced off but never getting into it with the principal characters. And a tea house massacre.

Good luck to anyone who's actually trying to follow the plot--if it weren't incoherent enough in its own right, the editing (most assuredly deliberately) makes it worse (come on, a "swoosh" cut to Saul Rubinek downing a glass of tequila when the film takes a brief jump to Mexico?). That's because they don't want you to anticipate something big that's going to go down. Could have been a stunner, too--except they resort to one of those endless talk-talk-talk in the middle of a deadly fight scenes in order to spit out the exposition.

Okay--here's the question. Is this at least one of those FREDDY VS. JASON deals where no matter how ridiculous or headache-inducing the REST of the film is, the final showdown between the two stars is going to make everybody happy?

Nope. You DO get a decent fight sequence, and then, well, something happens, and there's a freeze-frame, and then somebody goes barreling down the Golden Gate Bridge. And then the credits come up.

Not to get in to legitimate spoilers here, but I'd imagine that there was a lot of behind-the-scenes tumult when it came to coming up with an ending to this movie. Now, if Luc Besson HAD been behind the scenes? We could have had one hell of an emotionally wrenching AND brutally violent finale. This needed poetry--not the CRANK effect.

Such a missed opportunity--yes, there IS a degree of fun to be had, but this one could and should have been truly excellent.
My dog's breath smells like peanut butter...

...and I don't even have a dog!


User avatar
Chris Slack
Posts: 5506
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 1999 12:00 pm
Location: Everett WA USA
Contact:

Post by Chris Slack » Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:54 pm

Bummer, I was hoping this would be my big summer action fix. I guess I can always hold out hope for "Shoot 'Em Up."
"Regrettable... I was hoping for a colleague, but at least we have
another experimental subject..." -Mesa of Lost Women

User avatar
Latte Thunder
Posts: 1240
Joined: Sun Jul 16, 2000 10:00 pm
Location: In ur base, killin ur doods
Contact:

Post by Latte Thunder » Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:03 pm

Kane Kosugi? Sweet...
[url=http://www.cinema-suicide.com]Cinema Suicide[/url]
[url=http://soundtracks.cinema-suicide.com]Soundtrack Apocalisse[/url]

User avatar
steven_millan
Member
Posts: 122
Joined: Tue May 10, 2005 8:06 pm
Location: Las Vegas,NV
Contact:

Post by steven_millan » Sun Aug 26, 2007 1:58 am

I did hear word that there were originally planning to make this into a franchise for Jet Li,for if that were to happen it would be interesting to see him(in a series of films)as a darker anti-hero instead of the typically strongly moral good guy hero(that he's best known for always portraying).

User avatar
Remo D
Posts: 1277
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2000 10:00 pm
Location: Marina, CA U.S.A.
Contact:

Post by Remo D » Sun Aug 26, 2007 11:09 am

steven_millan wrote:I did hear word that there were originally planning to make this into a franchise for Jet Li,for if that were to happen it would be interesting to see him(in a series of films)as a darker anti-hero instead of the typically strongly moral good guy hero(that he's best known for always portraying).
Well, looking at the weekend tally... WAR did better than THE NANNY DIARIES, but that's about it. Doubt they're talking sequel anymore!
My dog's breath smells like peanut butter...

...and I don't even have a dog!


Post Reply