Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
dvd/ws Anamorphic/dd 5.1/dts/eng-sub
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Military & War
Studio: Tai Seng Entertainment Release Date: 11/11/2003 Run time: 13 minutes
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The movie is terrific
E. Laway | Temecula, California United States | 12/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I wouldn't have known about this movie if I wasn't an Amazondotcommer. I found it in one of those, "if you bought this DVD, you'd want to buy this too" follow-ups. So I thought I'd click on it and was surprise to see that it was a South Korean movie. I have never seen a Korean movie before, so I decided to order the DVD with high expectations due to the good reviews of fellow Amazoners. And you know what, I wasn't dissappointed at all. This movie is terrific. It has all the elements of an "edge-of-your-seat" adventure: love, honour, bravery, conflict, vast sceneries and loads and loads of testestorone driven battle scenes. What's not to like about this movie. Compare it all you want to other similiar Hollywood movies until the sun goes down, at the end, it is movie in itself. No trace of Hollywood here. It has a subtlety that is unique. This is evident in the numerous sub-plots. The kidnapped Ming princess is obviously smittened by the spear wielding, ex slave, Yeosol and he in return is equally enamoured, but these asumptions are only culled from certain gestures, a word spoken here and there and yet their love for each other is so palpable. And how about the young general, Choi. His reason for saving the princess as he tells it to his men, is a ticket out of China. Yeah, right. The second that a breeze lifts the Princess's veil and he was able to see her stuning porcelain face, is the moment he decided to save her. Imagine these two good looking, verile men fighting to the death just for her. Just enough to make a girl swone. This movie is full of little gems like this. The movie is also full of interesting characters like the Yuan General(Yu Ruan Goung from "Iron Monkey"), the archery expert, Sergeant Jinlip, the cowardly novice, Douchong and they even managed to throw in a pregnant peasant.The movie moves swiftly with no slow parts, and though it is very gory, (everything gets lopped-off including the horses, guess they don't have PETA over there in Korea) I think the bloody scenes are not gratitious and thye are well justified.My favorite thing about this movie is how the three characters relate to each other and how in very little words and gestures, are able to convey the essence of who they are. And as the events unfold to its tragic end, you can see that each have resolve their own fears even if it means their demise.The 130 minutes didn't feel long and if anything, I hated for this movie to end. I thoroughly enjoyed it. My only complain is that this DVD has NO EXTRAS at all. It is handsomely packaged but NO EXTRAS. would have been nice. But thank god, it's not dubbed."
The warrior is truly great....
Sinthetik Devil | Garden Grove, CA | 09/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This Korean film by director Kim Sung Soo is a visionary masterpiece that brings to mind "Braveheart" and "Gladiator." It takes place in ancient China, where Korean missionaries are betrayed by the Chinese and are taken into the desert to die. The Mongol hordes annihilate the Chinese guards and leave the Koreans to their fate. While wandering, the Koreans discover the Mongols have kidnapped the Chinese princess, and decide to rescue her and take her to safety. This is easier said than done, for the Mongols fight back with all the ferocity in their blood. Zhang Ziyi is the most known star in this film, but she is hardly the main character. There and great performances by Jung Woo Sung as a quiet loner and Ahn Sung Ki, the skilled archer who gives Legolas a run for his money. The scenery filmed in China and parts of South Korea is grand, and the battle scenes are filmed with finesse and brutality. Limbs are hacked off, arrows puncture necks, and heads are severed. This film is somewhat gory, so be warned. This film was the biggest budgeted Korean film in history at the time of its release, and it was a box office hit in South Korea. It is a wonder why this film was never released commercially in the States, when it is on par if not far superior, to the films made in Hollywood. The DVD has some great extras in the 2-Disc edition, and I highly recommend this film to fans of Braveheart, Gladiator, and other epic sagas."
Wars affect on man...
Kim Anehall | Chicago, IL USA | 04/08/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In the chaotic Medieval China when two dynasties, Yuan and Ming, were in a war for the power of China a small delegation is sent to the capitol from the Koryo kingdom to plead for peace, since the Mings are in control of the capitol. However, their peaceful attempt to resolve the issues at hand is prevented as the delegation is suspected of trying to assassinate the leader of the Ming dynasty. The delegation is sent to exile as they are attacked by Yuan troops that spare the Koryo delegation's lives. This becomes the beginning of a slow and bloody journey home which is sidetracked as they face numerous challenges on their way. Musa can be described in many different ways as it portrays a story of glory with several different themes built around the plot of war. It is these different themes that make the story fascinating as it displays the affect that the war has on men, women, old, young, and people from different places and socio-economic status. In the end, Sung-su Kim does a terrific job in directing Musa, which provides both contemplation and entertainment in the shadow of a ruthless war."
A spectacular, yet sober action/drama
T. Alex Tajiri | USA | 10/17/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I rented this movie just for the heck of it a little while ago, having an interest in Asian history (Though my main interest is in Japanese, not Korean history). Anyway...
This was a very lucid movie about a group of Korean diplomats who, exiled from their target country for treason, and unable to return home for shame, attempt to redeem themselves by saving a member of royalty from a group of Mongols. If all went well, they would be absolved of all charges of treason, and could therefore complete their mission. The situation gradually degenerates from a heroic rescue to a frantic battle for survival as the Mongols seek retribution for the intrusion into their affairs.
Contrary to what some claim, there actually IS some character development going on in this movie; it's just not what they're used to. Asians are a very subtle people, certainly not prone to the same habits and melodramatic emotional outbursts of your typical Western character. You can slowly, but surely see the growing resentment by the leader of the group at the weakening of his authority; the frustration of the head archer at the stubbornness of the leader; the despondency of the Mongol chieftan as he attempts to fulfill his duties-- duties for which he has neither heart nor interest. As far as the princess goes... yes, she was annoying. But then, she was supposed to be. Get over it! Even members of royalty have their quirks. Particularly royalty, actually. Some characters, admittedly, didn't make much sense; the movie still flows fairly smoothly, nonetheless.
Besides having an interesting plot and characters, the scenery is also beautiful. There's something particularly fitting about the desert; it's as if it will swallow everything whole. The movie was also well budgeted, so the camerawork and action sequences were very well done.
Finally, the movie concludes with a very nice battle sequence and the usual Asian flair for depression and gloominess.
Some of the scenes can drag on for quite some time. I didn't mind, but I'm aware that many people have almost zero patience.
The relationship between Yeosol and the princess is odd. I personally have trouble understanding it, though that's not all there is to the movie.
It is not a celebration of "cultural diversity in our time," nor does it promote "character building values for the youth of America." Sorry, the main character is not arbitrarily black, and violence solves everything.
So... in conclusion, I love this movie. Some people might not love this movie. We are all entitled to our own opinions, and theirs is wrong. But seriously, if you don't like a little drama intermixed with your bloody, gory action, then don't buy this movie. Or at least rent it first."