Saturday, April 23, 2011

13 ASSASSINS (Japanese) (2010)

Only Takashi Miike can pull it this way! Making a Samurai warrior film that reminds us one of the greatest Kurosawa films of all-time ‘The Seven Samurai’. Comparisons are fair and normal as both of them are Japanese legends; if one was Master, another is cult auteur on his own terms. However keeping his common traits of sadistic torture and grotesque bloodshed so much restraint, he gave us well made Samurai film; quite a rarity these days! Unlike Kurosawa’s epical three hours long classic, it is shorter in length with two hours. It lead us to feudal era where Samurai tradition was waning in godforsaken land. Sadistic and ruthless Lord Naritsugu is evil incarnation and Miike used his common props to portray his demon. To end this intolerable tyranny Shogun’s top official Sir Doi called Shinzaemon, a top Samurai warrior. The first half is gathering of all Samurais and strategic planning and execution with surprising unusual entry of 13th warrior who’s real fun to watch just like Master’s legend Toshiro Mifune.

What’s mind-blowing is the second half where awesome climax action lasts for 45 minutes. Its 13 deadly Samurai’s suicide mission Vs 200 soldiers and Miike made it as brilliant as we expect- brilliant set ups, traps and let the swords speak the language of Total Massacre. It lacks only one thing- the room for character development as in Master’s classic. Well for today’s new generation kids who haven’t watched the spark of Kurosawa’s classic, this would be a big firecracker.


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