Warrior's Way, The (Blu-ray) (2010)

If you create a user account, you can add your own review of this DVD

Released 19-Jul-2011

Cover Art

This review is sponsored by
BUY IT

Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Action Deleted Scenes
Featurette-Behind The Scenes
Rating Rated MA
Year Of Production 2010
Running Time 96:06 (Case: 100)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Sngmoo Lee
Studio
Distributor

Sony Pictures Home Entertain
Starring Dong-gun Jang
Kate Bosworth
Geoffrey Rush
Danny Huston
Tony Cox
Lung Ti
Analin Rudd
Case Standard Blu-ray
RPI $44.95 Music Javier Navarrete


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English DTS HD Master Audio 5.1
Widescreen Aspect Ratio 1.78:1
16x9 Enhancement
16x9 Enhanced
Video Format 1080p
Original Aspect Ratio 2.35:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

     Well, here's a strange little project which is quite hard to describe. This film was written and directed by South Korean film professor Sngmoo Lee and was his first recorded feature film. It stars Jang Dong Gun, who is a big star in his native Korea, as Yang the titular warrior. The film is mostly set in the badlands of the wild west, was shot using lots of green screen in a New Zealand studio, was produced by one of the Lord of the Rings producers, Barrie Osborne, and also stars Geoffrey Rush and Kate Bosworth. Certainly an eclectic collection of inputs. Oh, did I mention that Yang is a sword toting ninja style assassin being pursued by loads of other ninja assassins known as the Sad Flutes?

     Anyway, the story goes like this. Yang has spent a lifetime honing his sword skills so that he can help the Sad Flutes, a ruthless band of assassins, finish off their main competition. He succeeds in killing off their last swordsman, who is protecting a baby. Despite his years of killing he cannot bring himself to kill the baby and decides to take her with him and leave Asia for the Wild West to visit an old friend. He is pursued by his former colleagues because they are not happy with his decision to spare their enemy. When he arrives in the Wild West, he turns up at a small decrepit town where he expects to find his friend only to discover that his friend is already dead. He meets Lynn (Kate Bosworth), a local girl who's family are all dead, killed by a local gang of outlaws. The outlaws are led by evil villain, The Colonel (Danny Huston). Inexplicably the town is mostly made up of carnival workers, a midget, a strongman, a bearded lady etc, etc, along with one old drunk, Ron (Geoffrey Rush who also serves as narrator). Yang decides to settle down and help Lynn run his friend's laundry business. Obviously, this cannot be allowed to stand and soon Yang is at war with the local outlaws and then the Sad Flutes find out his location. Can he save the girl, the baby and the town?

     Unfortunately, despite this film being different it is also pretty bad. After the first couple of minutes which includes some nice swordplay action and a couple of hints at humour, the film turns into something quite dumb and confusing, not helped by really obvious and annoying CGI (very obvious in sharp HD), fake looking sets, inexplicable characters and average writing. On the plus side, there are some stylish images to be seen and impressive martial arts action. Jang Dong Gun is impressively stoic as the hero, however he doesn't really impress with his personality or screen presence. Bosworth is odd in her role, which is hampered by some ordinary dialogue. This film took only $11 million at the global box office and it is easy to see why.

     Not recommended.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

     The video quality is very good but not quite up to the best of Blu-ray. The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio which is not the original aspect ratio of 2.35:1. I have removed a star from the overall rating due to the incorrect aspect ratio. It is 1080/50p coded using the AVC codec. Strange is that 50p which indicates it was not transferred from a film source. Maybe a digital source was used. It was shot digitally but then transferred to 35mm for theatrical presentation.

     The picture was very clear and sharp throughout. The shadow detail was excellent. The colour is quite obviously digitally graded and takes on a sepia tone in many scenes adding to the odd feel of the film. The effect of the CGI, colour grading and other elements is a very fake and unrealistic look to the film, which may have been the intent but made it a harder film to get involved in as an audience member. There was some light grain occasionally on faces.

     There are no subtitles which would have been useful as some lines are hard to catch.

     There is no obvious layer change during playback.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

     The audio quality is very good without setting the world on fire.

     This disc contains an English DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack. Dialogue was a bit challenging for the viewer as I mentioned above. Some characters were quite easy to understand however others such as Kate Bosworth's character had very thin, weedy sounding vocals. It sounded like they were recorded differently resulting in a slightly odd sound. The score does not impress or annoy. The surround speakers were used regularly especially during action sequences and explosions. The music also spread to the surrounds. The subwoofer was used for action scenes, explosions and music support.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Menu

     The menu is still and includes music.

Deleted Scenes (11:54)

     These scenes include completed ones and others with green screens still in the background. Some should have remained in the film as they provide useful exposition. Others were rightly removed.

Behind the Scenes Montage (2:19)

     This is actually a very short promo style making of, which includes some behind the scenes footage and short interviews with the stars.

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    This film is available on Blu-ray in the US and features the original aspect ratio plus a digital copy. It beats the local version just on the basis of the aspect ratio.

Summary

     A weird ninja, wild west combination which doesn't work.

     The video quality is very good but in the incorrect ratio. The audio quality is very good but has some flaws. The extras are limited.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Friday, August 26, 2011
Review Equipment
DVDSONY BDP-S760 Blu-ray, using HDMI output
DisplaySharp LC52LE820X Quattron 52" Full HD LED-LCD TV . Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum. This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 1080p.
Audio DecoderBuilt into BD player. Calibrated with Ultimate DVD Platinum.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

Other Reviews NONE
Comments (Add)
Warrior's Way - MarkX REPLY POSTED
Aspect ratio - wolfgirv