Full 9-Minute Cannes Promo Reel for John Woo's Red Cliff
by Alex Billington
May 26, 2008
A full-length 9-minute promo reel for John Woo's Red Cliff played at Cannes this last weekend and some sneaky bastards happened to get their hands on it. The last time we mentioned Red Cliff was when we first showed you a teaser trailer back in February. If you've got 9 minutes to spare, I definitely suggest you check this out. It looks incredibly epic, like a Chinese version of Gladiator, if not even more epic than that. As awesome as this now looks, there are some terribly cheesy parts. For example, the tiger's face turning into the guy's face, or the soccer tournament where the guy yells "now this is interesting!" Come on John Woo, why do you have to put that crap in this?! Other than that, we hope you enjoy…
I really hope they show this at the Toronto Film Festival, because I honestly really want to see it. As much as I hate John Woo, I'm still very curious to check it out. The film currently runs 4 hours and cost $80 million to produce, the single most expensive film China has ever made. We can expect the film to either be cut down or somehow chopped up if it ever makes it to America.
Watch the promo reel for Red Cliff:
In 208 A.D., in the final days of the Han Dynasty, shrewd Prime Minister Cao Cao convinced the fickle Emperor Han the only way to unite all of China was to declare war on the kingdoms of Xu in the west and East Wu in the south. Thus began a military campaign of unprecedented scale, led by the Prime Minister, himself. Left with no other hope for survival, the kingdoms of Xu and East Wu formed an unlikely alliance. Numerous battles of strength and wit ensued, both on land and on water, eventually culminating in the battle of Red Cliff. During the battle, two thousand ships were burned, and the course of Chinese history was changed forever.
Red Cliff is directed by John Woo, of Broken Arrow, Face/Off, Mission: Impossible II, and Paycheck. The film is an adaptation of The Battle of Red Cliffs, which is a historical account of one of the most decisive battles in Chinese history. Red Cliff does not have a US distributor yet, but is aiming for release sometime in 2008. We'll update you once we hear more on its expected debut.
I can't stand John Woo, but this really intrigues me. I think it definitely looks like some of Woo's best work just based on what I've seen here. Yes, I agree with Alex that there are some really cheesy parts. But I wouldn't say it's because John Woo is a bad director. Some things don't translate well from culture to culture. A lot of what comes from other countries seems cheesy to us here in the USA, but it's not cheesy in the countries it comes from. So it's easy to criticize, but it probably worked where it was made.
Marty Martin on May 26, 2008
You guys are publishing "bootleg", i.e, illegal, if not unethical to reproduce and distribute media? How sad
cufford on May 26, 2008
cufford: welcome to teh Internet
andrew on May 26, 2008
haha real life dynasty warriors :] good times
Nate on May 28, 2008
Doesn't have a US distributor yet??? Clearly, none of them have seen these 9 minutes. Shake a leg and release this already!
Christopher on May 28, 2008
I'm just excited for this since I've played the Dynasty Warriors games so much. The Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history is very easily translatable, since its so dramatic and has a huge cast of characters. I know I'll be getting my hands on this somehow, even if it doesn't come to the US for years.
David on May 28, 2008
That "soccer" game is the ancient Chinese game played during the Han dynasty. If you go to a museum in Beijing (forgot which one). They have ancient pottery pieces and other things showing people playing the game. Sorry it was a long time ago when I went there as a tourist, plus I only got second-hand translation, so I don't know the details, but others can probably fill them in.
ahemahem on May 29, 2008
Did absolutely nothing for me but you guys go enjoy.
Sinner on May 29, 2008
Best Movie ever
Tim on Jun 29, 2008
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