Sound Off: James McTeigue's Ninja Assassin - Your Thoughts?
by Alex Billington
November 25, 2009
Now that you've seen it, what did you think? Its been 4 years since former Matrix assistant director James McTeigue brought us V for Vendetta, and now he's back with a new movie called Ninja Assassin. Considering it's a movie about ninjas starring Korean pop star turned actor Rain, that means it should be pretty awesome right? But all the reviews have been mixed so far. Is the story as bad as they say it is? Is the action at least awesome to watch? Does Rain kick as much ass as everyone says he does? If you've had the chance to see it, then sound off, leave a comment, and let us know what you thought of Ninja Assassin!
To fuel the fire, I frickin' loved this movie. But there are some problems with it. Yes, the story is complete shit, I'll even admit to that. But the action is awesome and its got ninjas, lots and lots of them, killing each other in insanely badass fight scenes. I mean, how can that not be awesome? Okay, don't answer that. But in all seriousness, I love James McTeigue and I think as the director he salvaged a bad script and still delivered a purely entertaining action movie. Rain does an amazing job, both physically in the fight scenes, and also as a not-so-cheesy Korean actor speaking badly-written English dialogue. It's fun and awesome and that's all.
What did you think of Ninja Assassin? An awesome action movie or an awful waste of time?
Reader Feedback - 39 Comments
i was afraid the story would be crap but hey i love martial arts movies just for the fights!
eddii on Nov 25, 2009
Saw a screening Monday night and I though it was not that great. Not horrible, but not memorable at all. There isn't one fight scene that wowed me to the level that I couldn't wait to rewatch it on DVD. Lots of the editing was really bad to where it was hard to focus or follow the action, and 80% of the fight scenes were done in darkness where you couldn't see anything, and I'm 27 and was seated the back of the theater. Despite the cheesy ending and lack of eye popping visuals, it was just OK.
Tim on Nov 25, 2009
Going tonight..read some reviews that said it was just a stupid plot and bad story. It really pisses me off that they say that, like they were expecting some perfect masterpiece from a movie called Ninja Assassin. This is meant for awesome scenes of blood and gore...I really dont think the director was intending anymore than that. Lookin forward to tonight.
Cody on Nov 25, 2009
Saw the movie last night. To my surprise, there were a large number of people in the audience. Even more to my surprise, they all seemed positive about it, reacting wildly to the ultra, ultra violent action, and even applauding at the end of the movie. Here's the deal and question you need to ask yourself going in, "What am I expecting out of this flick?" The first answers should be: ninjas, violence, blood, fight sequences, blood, violence, and ninjas in fight sequences. In that order. Honestly, after everything I had read going in, it wasn't as bad as it was made out to be. Yes, there were times that it was tough to see and follow the action, but I wasn't distracted by that. I ended up feeling that it was obviously the vibe of the movie to be 'afraid of the dark'. That's when ninjas get you! Certain scenes I feel were meant to be shrouded in darkness thus allowing the constant splattering of blood and sound of the weaponry to guide you through the action. The released scene of Rain being chased through the streets was a bit tough to watch in terms of shaky camera work and at times some poor editing, but I feel that there were many other scenes that made up for minor problems due to some stylistic choices and very cool shots. Bottom line is, the story and acting were poor, but that isn't why I wanted to see this flick. If you are looking for straight up action, that is exactly what this movie was about. Raizo's origin story was a cool touch, but couldn't salvage the negatives in terms of acting, script, and story. In response to #2, I thought the fight scene in which Raizo took on a ton of ninjas at once, with McTeigue zooming in and out of the action was very cool, giving us a continuous looking fight sequence. I also thought the final fight scenes were pretty entertaining. Let's not forget the fact that it has one of the more violent, gory, and bloody scenes I've ever seen in a movie and that was just the opening ten minutes!! Basically, turn your brain off, and go check the movie out. Nothing amazing and mediocre at best as a whole, but when it comes to straight entertainment value, definitely worth it for the action, laughs, and blood. What would you rather see? New Moon...?!
David on Nov 25, 2009
I guess you liked the most recent Rambo and Shoot Em Up too...
branden on Nov 25, 2009
I may go see it sometime next week, but to branden...the recent rambo was badass, and shoot em up just made me shake my head with how ridiculous it is
Mario on Nov 25, 2009
Rambo was awesome..shoot em up was just plain stupid not even good action. You obviously dont like action movies so why even come to this thread, O yeah to be a smartass, congrats asshole.
Cody on Nov 25, 2009
Okay, Shoot em up was amazing it was meant to be super cheesy. and Clive Owen is the man. Hilarious with some of its jokes and over the top like some other movies need to be. Rambo was good i still like the First Blood better. And i may be bias but im excited to see This tonight and i was never expecting a great story with this but watching all the training and stunt coordinating videos and interviews has me wanting more. aspects of anime and ninja myth has been needed in movies. everyone tries to make realistic ninja movies but honestly there myths and tricks are what make them warriors and legends.
Jimmy on Nov 25, 2009
Saw it last night. The whole movie were like a concept for a video game, which the final fight sequence is really a boss fight in any video game. The blood spills were overused, which you can start hearing giggles after every kill. Like #2, Tim said, not horrible, yet not memorable.
mikumiku on Nov 25, 2009
The video game comparison really struck with me too. I forsee in 4-5 years (if not sooner) movies like these will just be made into semi interactive video games. The line is going to be blurred very soon as graphics constantly improve.
Tim on Nov 25, 2009
There were ninja's fighting in this movie?! Seriously? I heard them but I didn't see anything. It was all so dark and cutting so often that it could have been anything. I didn't hate the movie and I want to watch it again to see if a second viewing makes things easier to pick out on screen. There was no real love interest. I couldn't get invested in the characters and I think maybe they dropped the deal a little late. It felt like, here's what we're doing and now its done kinda all at once.
amaranthisasin on Nov 25, 2009
to add fuel to the fire I thought it was poo.
usonnychiba1 on Nov 25, 2009
I love Ninjas! This movie KICKED ASS!! Absolutely one of my favorite movies of the year. I'm going to see it again soon. Blu-Ray day 1 purchase.
Rashad on Nov 25, 2009
Well being a geniune student of kan aka na ninjitsu, it was definately far fetched, but it is a movie- so what do you expect. I loved the film and thought it paid homage to the older martial art films as well as the new ones. It was action packed and yes, very dark. It was graphic in a sense, but shuriken and blades will do some bloody things to a person. I really enjoyed the film and it was awesome to see Sho back in action! I loved Rain for his character. TNR
theninjaraven on Nov 25, 2009
This movie doesn't interest me in the least bit but #5 #6 #7 i would just like to say that shoot em' up was great and then cheesy-ness of it just made it even better.
guh on Nov 25, 2009
why would anyone compare the sucky shoot em up to a real action movie?
samuel j on Nov 25, 2009
and the new rambo kicked ass
samuel j on Nov 25, 2009
I actually enjoyed it. It was entertaining and the action scenes quite well choreographed. I wasn't expecting anything else than what I saw. The film's premise is basically a b-movie that has been "upgraded and updated". The director did an impeccable job with those principles.
Joao Pedro Canhenha on Nov 25, 2009
#5....I did!!! Can't wait to see this!
Tra la la la la di da on Nov 25, 2009
I haven't seen this yet, but I plan to. Ninja / Samurai films are the few things I can watch and enjoy without really giving a flying crap about story or acting or pacing. Ninjas are just cool. I only hope that if they ever decide to do a US "Blade of the Immortal" film (or film series), that they get someone who can make a decent, well-written and paced film who understands the culture and knows how to keep the camera in one spot for more than two seconds. Shoot-em-up wasn't "sucky", it was a comedy. It was a parody of action movies. I guess they didn't stick their tongue far enough into their cheeks. I mean, there are direct parodies of specific scenes from other movies in that film, yet they manage to also keep it general enough to comment on just about every action film ever made, while at the same time being able to make a film that is almost entirely comprised of ludicrous action sequences. The movie is basically saying "Yes, action movies are stupid, but where else can you see something like THIS!!!" It's the sort of thing Crank tried to do, and that Crank 2 actually succeeded at doing as well. Rambo 2 was just a kinda violent cheesy action movie that almost took itself too seriously for what it was. I just watched V for Vendetta tonight, and I have to admit that that film is pretty decent, despite the really crappy use of slo-motion at the end and that way too much of it feels 'fake'. In fact, if anything can kill a movie like this one, it would be using slo-motion for action sequences.
Squiggly_P on Nov 25, 2009
i havent seen this film yet and i really am looking forward to it and i pretty much know what i am expecting: lots of blood, fight scenes, ninjas and shurikens, katanas, wakizashis etc etc and one might throw in a slightly well developped story and some good acting which the latest two are not compulsory but wouldnt hurt to have either from what i read and heard from my abroad freinds who have seen this movie i got all good vibes and the negative vibes were all from somehow viewers that really dont know the genre. cause the crits that have complained about the shakiness of the camera, the dark shootings, not good acting, not a solid story etc.. come on guys its a ninja flick. remember back in 70's and early 80's where we would sit infront of the screen and and watch mindless asskicking,shuriken throwing sai thrusting katana slashing wooden, air, forest, earth etc ninja action flicks... no body complained about a story back then everybody new what a ninja film was about and every body liked what they got the constant complaints of every film not being up to oscar worthy performance quality, lack of story and characterisation etc .. not every film is done to deliver those aspects. and not every movie is fun to wath if done so... if you want realism in a ninja film you wont even see them. and the action would completely take place in shadows there wouldnt be a story development, no characterisation. cause ninjas are not samurai, they do their work in the dark. they are assassins 😀 bred and trained only to kill. they are not the hand that holds the gun, finger that squeezes the trigger. they are the Bullet!!!! how much characterisation can you expect from a bullet 😀 the action would be swift fast and final. you wouldnt even see it. and in reall life the action is not slow motioned for us to follow every step/second of it. its blurred. shaky and nauseating mostly. so lets forget about realism in such films and try to enjoy the moment, kick back for two ours get some popped corn and dive in to the action 😀 if half of what you who has seen described from the movie and from what i have seen from the trailer i will most definetely love the guided via "sound, sparkles from the steel clashing and blood splatters" action in the dark, and expect to see what we are allowed to see to be stylised. i know i will like this one 😀 thnx for bearing with me for this long 😀 its been a long comment. i guess i have missed a ninja flick for some time 😀 PS: tonight will see "Ninja" to get my mood up for the "Ninja Assassin" 😀 PS2: Rambo was one of the best of the series right after The First Blood. and Shoot them up just got out there and done what it has set out to do..mindless gun fighting action from cover to cover 😀 (remember John Woo's Hard Boiled not that classy and league but in the same nuance :D) cheers guys and of course gals
burak "Daequitas" on Nov 26, 2009
It was awesome, you can't expect much more from a ninja movie. I think the stupid love sequence was over done, but besides that it was great. Didn't feel like the Matrix or V, which was good. Had its own Ninja feeling.
JTaylor on Nov 26, 2009
#11 your comment amaranthisasin make me laugh "There were ninja's fighting in this movie?! Seriously? I heard them but I didn't see anything. It was all so dark and cutting so often that it could have been anything." Ninjas have to fight in the shadow cause they are Ninjas. you got to remember Ninjas are Stealth Assassins so i just the movie did the right thing to have them fight in the dark.
blaze on Nov 26, 2009
WHOOO HOOO!!! F'n awesome! Love how McTeigue made the ninjas more like phantoms than just humans who can fight and flip. They reminded me of mix between Alien & Ring Wraiths who studied kung fu. I also loved that McTeigue made the throwing stars more like 50 caliber steel piercers. Just awesome, a helluva good time!
Superhaus on Nov 26, 2009
SHO KUSUGI is a legend and theis is the first time that I have seen him on the big screen. I was too young when 9 deaths of he Nonja came out but I did own all of his ninja trilogy on VHS. Revenge of the Ninja is obviously the best but I do remeber anther flick called Pray for Death that I used to enjoy a lot. Does anyone know what happened to Kane Kusugi (Son of Sho)? I thought that he would have been a perfect fit for the role that RAIN play in the movie.
Masteryoda007 on Nov 26, 2009
I enjoyed the movie for what it was. Sure the story wasn't too strong, and really felt at times that it was loosely strung together, but the action was top notch! If you love Ninjas, there are lots of cool aspects about this movie that I found enjoyable. Lots of ninja stars used! This movie to some degree was stylized, and it should be understood that when you go in. In some aspects it could seen as an anime. 'Cept most anime's have a better story! 🙂 The ending was not what I was hoping to see, but after I swallowed my pride I took it for what it was and just tried to enjoy the explosions. I'd give this movie a C overall. I wouldn't go out and rush to see it again, but its got lots of gore and sweet kills. Ladies would get something out of this because the actor is more buff that some of the guys in Hollywood. My advice, turn your brain off, and enjoy!
Bauzer on Nov 26, 2009
the movie did what it was supposed to do i was not dissapointed
dahmer on Nov 26, 2009
cut throat ninja shit! good movie
Madnezz344 on Nov 26, 2009
I don't know why some peeps hate so bad, this movie was dope. Sure it didn't have much story line, but if you go watch pure action movies and expect a whole lotta story line it's your own fault you were disappointed. As far as for not being able to see them... One word.. Ninja.. You're not supposed to see them.. But either way they showed enough of the ninjas to make great fight scenes, and hid them enough to fit the movies definition of a ninja, this is a very enjoyable movie I'd love to watch it again.
Pan on Nov 26, 2009
This is a must-see for a martial arts fan; as a fan we have to go see it and support it so they continue these types of movies. This movie was extremely exciting, and I am still excited that these types of films may continue to come out. It was very evident that the people involved worked hard to make it awesome. That said, it may need some work. What worked in this movie was the intensity, the ninja secrets and mythology, the background story of Raizo, and a lot of the action. What didn't do it for me (spoilers) was seeing the super elite ninjas go from terrifying, mysterious super warriors to normal, beatable men in ninja suits towards the end who were blown up by interpol special ops. If the parts with the police were taken out, more time could have been given to the more interesting ninja clan characters and plot. The film was a mish-mash of horror, suspense, drama and action. The action had many amazing moments, but like others have said, many parts were too dark to tell what was going on, and the editing/camera work was all over the place so it was hard to follow it. Raizo (Rain) has been established as a worthy leading actor, and bad ass martial artist. I realize the movie took the Western audience into consideration, but I hope next time they focus on the ninja conflicts only (if there is a next one). What would be incredible would be if Kawajiri of MadHouse animation studios (and Director of Ninja Scroll) took on Ninja Gaiden and made a full feature anime movie. Also, take Scorpion and SubZero of Mortal Kombat and reboot that film franchise with some serious heart and people would flock to it. Ultimately, Ninja Assassin is so much better than the cheesy ninja movies I grew up on in the 80's... I give it a must-see.
Scott on Nov 26, 2009
No idea why alot of people didn't seem to like it. It was very easy to see what was going on, even in the really dark fights; only noticed the shaking camera thing once. Story was decent, it was good enough that it never occured to me during the movie that it wasn't that great. The main character didn't really draw you in, I still liked him though. The blood was over the top, and it was mean't to be. I've never thought blood is necassary in good action movies, video games, etc. however in this case it didn't really harm the film. Best Ninja movie I've ever seen, and I mean really are there really any other good ones? (Granted I am 19, and havn't seen too many of the "classics") Eh, in my opinion it was a good film, I'd watch it again, and I'd love to watch they "special features" on the film, those were the most impressive fight scenes of that sort I've ever seen. And for those of you who really thought it was a dissappointment... those 99/100 movies don't come around often... Enjoy Assassin for what it is: an over the top action film in the vein of Ninja Gaiden, Matrix, etc. and not a Star Wars: A New Hope or a Casablanca.
Schurge on Nov 27, 2009
The funny thing : The Release of the ( Ninja ) DVD by the companies ( Nu Image Films ) and ( Millennium Films ) in Bulgaria and their distributors : Malaysia 22 October 2009 Thailand 3 December 2009 The same step that (The Asylum) and (The Global Asylum) ... do when a blockbuster movie come out ... stealing the title and the spot and lying to the audience ... to sell their low budget things ..!! by just releasing their DVDs a month or weeks before the actual release of the blockbuster !!!! But it looks like they didn't succeed to release it in USA in the same time ... I am sure they wanted to do it .. !!! ........... With my respect for Scott Adkins (Actor) and Isaac Florentine (Director)... I don't believe they have a guilt for this stuff that happening ... !!!
Shero on Nov 28, 2009
Definitely a "red-box movie"
Ellis on Nov 28, 2009
Was the plot good? No. Was the acting good? No. Was it Entertaining? Thoroughly So. If you're the type that tries to over-analyze action films and be overly critical of them, don't watch this.The makers of the movie probably didn't intend for the film to be viewed in such a way. In other words: If you're going to see it, relax, enjoy, and don't take it too seriously. Let your guard down and be high kicked by this movie with kick ass action sequences. Warning: May be too gorey for some, but that's part of the fun.
bparis on Nov 29, 2009
I've been waiting for this for over a year now, I've been really excited. The story was awful. None of the action really blew me away, except for the one you see in the trailer in which they're all fighting in traffic. Rain did well in his (very limited) role, definitely looked the part. I was expecting a film that was good because of the people behind it (I think V for Vendetta was just masterful) as well as a good ninja flick with lots of gore and action. I got the second only. Which is cool. You have to expect nothing but ninjas ejaculating all over your screen when you go to see Ninja Assassin. Like someone above me said, 'turn your brain off'. But - I HATED the CGI blood splattering around. I felt like I was trapped in Tekken. Seriously. It was obviously purposeful but it took away from everything to me.
Maria on Nov 29, 2009
It was awesome! especially since there were only about three actual fight scenes with rain, you mainly saw him showing off his skills in his room...not complaining at all. I was told to prepare myself to watch a CG showdown and I thought," Oh crap...but i just have to see it." and i am glad i did because it wasn't that bad at all, it was cool and it didn't make me feel like i was watching part cartoon part live action movie. Makes me wonder how the recent street fighter was so bad, but that's another story entirely. Rain has had me drooling from his dramas and now I'm dehydrated, his performance was much better than expected even from my biased point of view. I can say no more other than it was a great movie!!!!!!
Nuika on Nov 29, 2009
I saw this on Thanksgiving and I LOVED it! i'm a chick who loves action movies and i was seriously on the edge of my seat in some of the action scenes (although i did have to close my eyes alot - very bloody and gory). Rain was incredible - would love to know how much training he did for this. the story itself wasn't bad and the other two main characters didn't annoy me, which was a plus. but the action scenes were off the hook.
red923 on Nov 30, 2009
IT WAS A NINJA MOVIE RIGHT, BASED ON THAT I THOUGHT THAT IT WAS GREAT. I CANT WAIT FOR NINJA ASSASSIN 2!!! I LOVE (BI) RAIN, I ORDERED FULL HOUSE AND HIS CD'S. I AM IN ABSOLUTLY NUTS AGOUT THIS MAN! GREAT POTENTIAL FOR AMERICAN FILMS. HE CAN ACT HE CAN SING!! FIGHTING!!
DESIREE on Jan 8, 2010
i actually really liked the film... i would have liked to see a kiss in there somewhere... i really love rain as and entertainer... i hope that after he returns from the military that he will do some more american movies...
traild on Sep 5, 2010
Sorry, no commenting is allowed at this time.