Sunday, August 25, 2013

Review: The Sword With No Name (movie)

Okay, so a little while back I was flipping through the now-heavily picked over offerings on Netflix in search of some light entertainment.  Now that we've finished the Heroes series (which we loved) and the Supernatural series (which we also loved) and an assortment of other films (a few of which we loved), there's not much left on Netflix we want to watch.  So I took a chance on a Korean historical/martial arts flick called The Sword With No Name in English.  I've watched quite a lot of Japanese and Chinese films of this type and I really enjoy them but Korean films are a new area for me.

It's based on the historical figure the Empress Myeongseong who comes across as a pretty cool person.  The film's overall plot seems fairly historical but they add in an extra character to make it a love story.  Just before her marriage to the king the young Min Ja-yeong meets a young man called Mu-myeong and he falls wildly in love with her.  The Mu-myeong character is ahistorical but provides the secret forbidden love story which the film is primarily about.

Although there are a couple of swordfighting scenes, a battle, and some assassination scenes it's mostly about the two young people.  My wife who was busy in the next room commented on hearing a very high proportion of sappy romantic music to clashing swords.  Many of the sword duels in the beginning of the film are done in a very dark, fantasy artsy style.  This gave the impression that the general tone of the film was to be dark and fantasy artsy, which is fine, but that wasn't actually the case.  So that was a bit confusing.  I really loved the cultural-historical aspects of the film.  Lots of great palace and city scenes, cool costumes, etc.

I thought it was okay, but not great.  So if you're in the mood for a martial arts/romantic/historical flick, check it out.

1 comment:

  1. You shouldnt watch in English.There is an option on Netflix to remove dubbing and enjoy the original.It is completely different.Good example for this is "Oldboy".It is a classic now but in English is truly bad.